Netflix’s latest Arabic original ‘Dollar’ stars Lebanese icon Adel Karam

‘Dollar’ is set for release on Aug. 8. (Supplied)
Updated 17 July 2019

Netflix’s latest Arabic original ‘Dollar’ stars Lebanese icon Adel Karam

DUBAI: Netflix’s latest Arabic original is set to hit TV screens on Aug. 8 and is called “Dollar,” the streaming company announced this week.  

The drama is set in modern-day Lebanon and stars Lebanese film veteran Adel Karam — who starred in “The Insult,” which was nominated for an Oscar in 2018 — and Algerian-Lebanese actor Amal Bouchoucha.

The fast-paced series tells the story of advertising mastermind, Tarek (Adel Karam), who is tasked with coming up with a million dollar idea for the launch of a new bank. He’s got it, but will only share his idea with the CEO. Something’s off and the bank’s hard-hitting young CFO, Zeina (Amal Bouchoucha), can sense it. The series follows the situation as Zeina tries to piece together exactly what is going on.

Helmed by Syrian director Samer Berkawi, the director behind such regional hit shows as “Al-Hayba” and “Half Day,” the series was produced by Cedars Art Production - Sabbah Brothers and written by Hisham Hilal.

It is latest Middle Eastern series to join Netflix’s cadre of shows and growing roster of Arabic-language productions, but marks a shift from the streaming company’s penchant for Arab thrillers such as “Paranormal” — Netflix’s first Egyptian drama, based on the best-selling Arabic horror series by late Egyptian author Ahmed Khaled Towfik — and “Jinn,” which told the story of teenagers battling supernatural powers and faced backlash over its portrayal of young people in Jordan.

Despite the drama, on and off the screen, “Dollar” will premiere on Aug. 8, with all 15 episodes available to watch immediately.

Director Berkawi lauded the versatility of his cast in a released statement.

“I’m truly excited to be working with Netflix on our new series ‘Dollar’ and am confident that the show will appeal to Netflix’s audiences worldwide. This project is an exciting one, bringing together themes of suspense and drama that showcase Amal Bouchoucha’s onscreen talents, as well as Adel Karam’s versatility beyond the comedy that he is known and loved for,” he said.

“Dollar” will be subtitled in 20 languages.


What We Are Reading Today: Digital Minimalism by Cal Newport

Updated 23 August 2019

What We Are Reading Today: Digital Minimalism by Cal Newport

  • Digital minimalists are all around us

Minimalism is the art of knowing how much is just enough. Digital minimalism applies this idea to our personal technology. It is the key to living a focused life in an increasingly noisy world.

In this timely and enlightening book, the bestselling author of Deep Work introduces a philosophy for technology use that has already improved countless lives, according to a preview published on goodreads.com.

Digital minimalists are all around us. They are the calm, happy people who can hold long conversations without furtive glances at their phones. They can get lost in a good book, a woodworking project, or a leisurely morning run. They can have fun with friends and family without the obsessive urge to document the experience.

Drawing on a diverse array of real-life examples, from Amish farmers to harried parents to Silicon Valley programmers, Newport identifies the common practices of digital minimalists and the ideas that underpin them. 

He shows how digital minimalists are rethinking their relationship to social media, rediscovering the pleasures of the offline world, and reconnecting with their inner selves through regular periods of solitude.

He then shares strategies for integrating these practices into your life, starting with a 30-day “digital declutter” process that has already helped thousands feel less overwhelmed and more in control.