UAE alliance aims to create new major TV, film producer

Image Nation Abu Dhabi, Majid Al Futtaim and MBC Studios aims to greenlight several movie and TV projects annually
UAE alliance aims to create new major TV, film producer
Majid Al Futtaim is contributing to the partnership through its cinemas arm as both an exhibitor and distributor of films.
By Sam Bridge
Wed 15 May 2019 03:03 PM

Image Nation Abu Dhabi, Majid Al Futtaim and MBC Studios have entered into an alliance to launch a major production partnership for film and TV projects across the Middle East.

The partnership will greenlight several projects annually, representing a significant boost to the region’s growing film, TV and entertainment industry, a statement said.

It added that the new partnership will support projects from inception to distribution.

It is actively seeking projects from across the Middle East, with a focus on Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Egypt, and has already begun producing its first project.

View this post on Instagram

رئيسنا التنفيذي مايكل غارين: شراكتنا مع ماجد الفطيم وام بي سي ستوديوز سيكون لها تأثير مهم على حجم الإنتاج الفني وطموحات صناعة المحتوى والترفيه في منطقة الشرق الأوسط وهي خطوة كبرى نحو تحقيق رؤية إيمج نيشن بإنشاء صناعة محتوى حيوية في المنطقة تستقطب المشاهدين إقليميًا ودوليًا. #ادعم_السينما_العربية ‘This partnership will have a significant impact on the scale and ambition of the region’s industries – a major step towards Image Nation’s vision of creating dynamic content for the Middle East that engages local and international audiences’ – our CEO Michael Garin. #SupportArabCinema #Cannes2019

A post shared by Image Nation (@imagenationad) on

The first film supported by the partnership is Three Four Eternity, a vampire family drama produced by Mohamed Hefzy (Clash, Sheikh Jackson) under his company Film Clinic, which will be the directorial debut for the film’s writer, Rami Yasin (The Worthy, Zinzana).

“This region has infinitely talented writers and filmmakers wanting to tell their stories, as well as a sophisticated consumer audience that craves locally made content that resonates with them,” said Ben Ross, chief content officer at Image Nation.

“This partnership will have a significant impact on the scale and ambition of the region’s industries, enabling more creatives to bring their ideas to life and deliver the content that audiences want to see.”

Majid Al Futtaim is contributing to the partnership through its cinemas arm as both an exhibitor and distributor of films.

Its cinema arm, VOX Cinemas’ regional footprint features over 400 screens in eight countries and plans to operate over 1,000 screens across the GCC by 2023, including 600 screens in Saudi Arabia.

Khaled El Chidiac, acting CEO, Majid Al Futtaim - Ventures said: “Entertainment and creative industries are vital to a thriving and diversified economy and there has never been a more exciting time to be part of this field in the MENA region, and particularly, Saudi Arabia, in light of Vision 2030... we look forward to working closely with them as they bring their work to life and receive well-deserved exposure on a regional and international stage.”

Peter Smith, managing director of MBC Studios added: “We're bringing together, for the very first time, a 360-degree Arab film entity that covers all aspects of content creation, including development, production, theatrical exhibition, televising on the Middle East's leading broadcaster and SVOD platforms, as well as international sales.

"We want to create premium Arabic language feature film content from across the Middle East to connect with audiences in the region and internationally. This partnership, in essence, creates a fully integrated studio."

Image Nation and MBC Studios announced earlier this year a slate of Saudi films for local, regional and international audiences, which aim to film in Saudi and use Saudi talent in front of and behind the camera.

For all the latest business news from the UAE and Gulf countries, follow us on Twitter and Linkedin, like us on Facebook and subscribe to our YouTube page, which is updated daily.

Subscribe to our Newsletter

Subscribe to Arabian Business' newsletter to receive the latest breaking news and business stories in Dubai,the UAE and the GCC straight to your inbox.