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Auds feast on glut of Ramadan TV

Dispatch

CAIRO — With limited film releases during the monthlong fasting/feasting holiday of Ramadan, folks turn to their TVs in Egypt.

This year’s fare for Ramadan, which ended Nov. 26, featured series by veteran film directors Khairy Bhaisry and Ali Badrakhan, with stars like Layla Olwy and Nabila Ebeid.

Egyptian TV series dominated the Arab region’s terrestrial and satellite channels, led by Egyptian Media City, Egyptian TV Production Sector and Soot Al-Kaheira (Cairo Sound). Trio of companies produced an estimated 50 Ramadan TV series. Sat channel MBC acquired exclusive rights to several Egyptian serials.

Ramadan ratings winners included soaps “Tales of a Modern Husband,” featuring Ashraf Abdel Baky; controversial “Women’s Revolution,” advocating more freedom for women; philosophical drama “Pure White”; and Nabila Ebeid starrer “Aunt Noor” about an Egyptian professor returned from the U.S. Surprise hit was “Handsome and Liar,” featuring journalist Mahmoud Saad interviewing celebs connected to a lie detector.

However, critics lambasted many shows for a lack of dramatic freshness and for introducing commercials to break up shows.

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