Saudi film ‘Najd’ to premiere soon in Kingdom

A scene from the film Najd.
Updated 11 January 2018
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Saudi film ‘Najd’ to premiere soon in Kingdom

JEDDAH: “Najd”, a Saudi film featuring Kuwaiti actress Hayat Al-Fahad, will be premiered in Saudi Arabia, in line with the approval of the General Entertainment Authority for cinemas to reopen in Saudi Arabia.
Khaled Al-Rajeh, a Saudi producer and writer, began preparation two years ago to produce his film “Najd” which revolves around Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Egypt in the 1950s and the present.
In an Interview with MBC TV channel, star Al-Fahad talked about the new film. “It is about young couple’s story — the wife who keeps a secret throughout her life.”
Al-Fahad posted a photo of her in one of the newspapers that published the news of the film on her official Instagram account (@hayatalfahad) and commented: “Najd is the first Saudi film starring yours truly.”
The author and director of “Najd” is Sameer A’aref, who directed several well-known series and movies in the Gulf region, including the Saudi series “37 degrees,” “Tash 17 and 18” and “Shabab albomb 5,” which was classified as one of the most Googled series of 2017.
Najd was filmed in a number of heritage areas, including the Saudi areas of Siddus and Al-Oyainah, as well as several locations in Kuwait. Ninety percent was filmed in Saudi Arabia.
Mamdoh Al-Salem, who organized and supervised the first Saudi film festival with a total of 27 television shows under his name, told Arab News: “We cannot affirm which movie will be the first Saudi movie to be screened in Saudi Arabia as there is a huge number of producers and filmmakers working on a number of movies under international standards.”
“Let’s talk about a real cinema industry and what the Saudi audience wants to see, as until now filmmakers and producers cannot certify Saudi audience preferences as they just have YouTube and television programs as available sources. Are they looking to see comedy, action, drama, history or fantasy? It is a hard task to make predictions, except through experiments in making movies. Thus, our goal as filmmakers is to provide a real cinematic industry for Saudi movies with an international measure.”
The Saudi Arabian Society for Culture and Arts (SASCA) in Riyadh and the Union of Producers help attract young faces to participate in the film, and has already chosen names.
The president of SASCA in Jeddah, Omar Al-Jasser, told Arab News: “The association helps many filmmakers and drama producers in the country to attract new faces and talents. We offer performance tests and then help to promote actors and actresses to cooperate with them.”
Najd is getting great reactions from people and stars on social media because of the start of Saudi cinema after the decision to reopen cinemas and theaters in the Kingdom.
The movie’s name refers to a geographical central region of Saudi Arabia in which 28 percent of Saudis live. Najd consists of the regions of Riyadh, Qassim and Hail.


Saudi foreign minister participates in US meeting on drug control, Nelson Mandela Peace Summit

Updated 5 min 28 sec ago
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Saudi foreign minister participates in US meeting on drug control, Nelson Mandela Peace Summit

JEDDAH: Saudi Arabia’s Foreign Minister Adel Al-Jubeir participated in a high-level meeting on drug control chaired by US President Donald Trump at the United Nations headquarters in New York.
The meeting, on the sidelines of the General Assembly’s 73rd session, discussed ways to eliminate the production of drugs, the problem of their addiction around the world and ways of raising awareness of their damage.
Al-Jubeir participated in the Nelson Mandela Peace Summit, also held on the sidelines of the General Assembly session, to focus on world peace on the 100th anniversary of the birth of Nelson Mandela.
In a speech on behalf of the Arab Group, Al-Jubeir affirmed that Mandela had strong and historical relationships with the leaders of Saudi Arabia and Arab countries, and had stances supportive of the Palestinian cause, the first cause of Arabs and Muslims.
He added: “I am pleased to stand with you today on behalf of the Arab League and Saudi Arabia, the president of the 29th Arab Summit, at a summit attributed to a man who changed history thanks to his tolerance, patience and humanity, though the years of pain, prison and suffering he faced during his years of struggle for peace, security and development in South Africa and the world.”
Perhaps one of the most important lessons from which we can benefit, Al-Jubeir added, is our continuation to build and strengthen peace and security in the world to achieve the wellbeing of our peoples, to activate the principles of peaceful coexistence among peoples, and to respect the principle of non-interference in the internal affairs of other states.
Al-Jubeir also held bilateral meetings with a number of officials, including his counterparts from Indonesia, Kazakhstan, Yemen, Finland, Belgium, Malaysia and Bulgaria.
He also participated in the open seminar to present the Bahraini model of coexistence and religious tolerance entitled “Towards Comprehensive Peaceful Societies,” organized by King Hamad International Center for Peaceful Coexistence, during which ways of establishing co-existence, tolerance and combating extremism were discussed.