Middle East distributor Front Row Filmed Entertainment follows up on the phenomenal success of its first major co-production, the Arabic-language remake of Perfect Strangerswhich topped the Netflix charts worldwide when it launched in January (and sparked noisy controversy in Egypt).
The fast-growing company has joined the set of producers behind the satirical coming-of-age comedy Abdelinhofrom the French-Moroccan filmmaker Hicham Ayouch (Fever) and with the Palestinian star Ali Suliman (Tom Clancy’s Jack RyanTerrence Malick’s The last planet, Hudas salon). Front Row will also distribute the film in the Middle East and North Africa. The international sales are handled by the Parisian outfit Urban Sales, which takes the film to Cannes.
Produced and directed by Ayouch and co-produced by Canal + International, Chadi Abdos Hecat (Oscar nominated Caves), FreeMonkeyz and Sihamou Productions, the story follows Abdelinho, a young Moroccan man who is fascinated by everything to do with Brazil, to the point where he speaks the language fluently, dances samba regularly and is head over heels in love with Maria. , a heroine of a telenovela. However, his world is turned upside down when an ultra-conservative TV evangelist arrives.
“We are proud to be part of such a team. Hicham is an innate storyteller with an understanding of the region’s reality, but also its enormous potential.” said Front Row CEO Gianluca Chakra. “Abdelinho is a unique film that emphasizes how fanaticism can limit dreams and creativity, to a weakening society. Ultimately, the film injects positivity and hope into our cultures here, something we always strive for, especially in the Middle East. Given our position in the market, we will do everything to get this film out and be seen by as many eyes as we can reach. ”
Ayouch’s fourth feature, Abdelinho was one of the busiest works underway in the Red Sea Souk project market in Saudi Arabia in late 2021. It is currently in post-production and aims to be ready by the end of the year.
“Abdelinho is a comedy and a contemporary tale, with a strong message about the importance of living out your dreams and being free, ”said Ayouch. “We will follow the journey of a character who will have to fight for his society, just to be himself. I hope this film will create passionate and constructive discussions in the Arab world about how we deal with human differences and “I’m very happy to work with Front Row, whose enthusiasm for Abdelinho is wonderful, they fell in love with the film, and I’m sure they will do a fantastic job.”