The Royal Wedding’s ‘zaghrata’ mystery — who was ‘ululating’ as Harry and Meghan left the chapel?

Britain's Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex and his wife Meghan, Duchess of Sussex emerge from the West Door of St George's Chapel. (AFP)
Updated 21 May 2018
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The Royal Wedding’s ‘zaghrata’ mystery — who was ‘ululating’ as Harry and Meghan left the chapel?

LONDON: As the dust settles on the weekend’s royal wedding extravaganza, Arab interest has switched from speculation over Meghan Markle’s dress to a more pressing mystery — who was ululating as the couple emerged from the chapel?
The high-pitched celebratory noise traditionally reserved for major celebrations in the Middle East were clearly audible as the newly weds paused at the top of the steps outside St. George’s Chapel in Windsor on Saturday. They again rang out as the couple descended the steps into the sunshine and the welcoming embrace of the crowds.
Was there an Arab guest in the crowd expressing their excitement for the Duke and Duchess of Sussex in their own inimitable fashion?
The UK’s Foreign and Commonwealth Office tweeted a video on their Arabic account of the supposed ululations, saying: “Maybe you can hear the ‘Zaghrata’ at the moment Harry and Meghan leave the church after the wedding?”


Zaghrata is a form of ululation practiced in the region.
Rima Maktabi — London bureau chief at the Al Arabiya News Channel, who was covering the wedding — told Arab News: “I heard it first when Harry went into the church and then when Meghan went inside, I didn’t understand what it was.
“The commentators were saying that they heard ‘international sounds’, and then as they came out, it was clear.”
However, the Arab claim to be the source of ululation is facing a challenge from a grandmother from Lesotho who told British media that Harry had pointed out to her and smiled as she made the noise.
Malineo Motsephe, 70, traveled from the African nation for the wedding, having met Harry through her work with one of his charities.
Ululating, it turns out, is as common a cultural phenomenon in parts of Africa as it is in the Arab world.

 


Manga fan favorite coming soon to Gulf cinemas

Updated 17 min 49 sec ago
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Manga fan favorite coming soon to Gulf cinemas

  • Set in Singapore, it is the first Detective Conan film based outside Japan
  • In 2018, “Detective Conan: Zero the Enforcer” was released across the Arab world

DUBAI: The Japanese animated film “Detective Conan: The Fist of Blue Sapphire” is set to be released in cinemas across the Gulf.

The film is directed by Tomoka Nagaoka (assistant director of “Detective Conan: The Crimson Love Letter”) and written by Takahiro Okura, while Katsuo Ono returns as music composer.

Set in Singapore, it is the first Detective Conan film based outside Japan. When a local billionaire plans to retrieve the world’s largest sapphire, which has been resting at the bottom of the ocean since the 19th century, a murder occurs.

Conan must go to the famous Marina Bay Sands Hotel in Singapore to solve the case and bring the culprit to justice.

It follows the 2018 film “Detective Conan: Zero the Enforcer,” and is the 23rd instalment of the “Case Closed” film series based on the manga series of the same name by Gosho Aoyama.

Detective Conan franchise regulars Minami Takayama, Wakana Yamazaki and Rikiya Koyama return as Conan Edogawa, Ran Mouri, and Kogoro Mouri respectively. Kappei Yamaguchi reprises his role as Kaito Kid.

BACKGROUND

The popularity of “Detective Conan” in the Arab world dates back to 2000, and is still dominant today as fans in the region eagerly welcome the new “Detective Conan” movies.

In 2018, “Detective Conan: Zero the Enforcer” was released across the Arab world and received rave reviews as audiences flocked to see Conan solve mysterious cases.

In Japan, “Detective Conan: The Fist of Blue Sapphire” sold more than 300,000 tickets and earned $3.8 million in box office sales on its opening day.

Topping the Japanese box office, the film grossed $17 million during its opening weekend, setting a new franchise record.

Remarkably, the movie unseated “Avengers: Endgame” from the top spot just one month after the latter’s official release.

“The Fist of Blue Sapphire” has since grossed more than $68 million in Japan, becoming the second-highest-grossing “Detective Conan” film after “Zero the Enforcer.”

The new film will be released  in the UAE, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Bahrain and Saudi Arabia on June 13.