Emirati helmer Ali F. Mostafa (“City of Life”) will shoot “A to B,” a road movie about three Western-educated Arab youths who travel 1,500 miles from Abu Dhabi to Beirut in memory of their deceased best friend whose presence is felt throughout.
A rare case of a truly pan-Arab project, in terms of both narrative and production, “A to B” marks the collaboration of a trio of young producers with fresh outlooks: Saudi Arabia’s Mohammed Al Turki (“Arbitrage”), Egypt’s Mohamed Hefzi (“My Brother the Devil”) and Lebanon’s Paul Baboudjian (“Here Comes the Rain”).
“A to B” is the first Emirati feature co-financed by Abu Dhabi’s government-backed TwoFour54 media hub, headed by Noura Al Kaabi, whose mission is to build a film and TV industry with international standing in the Emirati capital, and, by extension, in the UAE.
“A to B” will have mostly English dialogue, reflecting the reality of Western-educated youths in the region. Pic is described as “The Hangover” meets “The Big Chill” in the Arab world.
“When Ali brought us the project, what really struck me was the whole concept of pan-Arabic but, more importantly, how it spoke to his contemporaries,” said TwoFour54’s president international and chief commercial officer Wayne Borg. “It aligns beautifully with our mandate in terms of supporting Arabic talent and fostering Arab content creation in the region.”
“This story is so universal, yet so Arab,” said Hefzi, who contributed to the script.
Mostafa made a splash with 2009 Dubai-set “City of Life,” a multilingual depiction of the city’s social fabric and the first local feature shot there.
Production on “A to B” will begin at the end of October with a six-week shoot across the region.
Range Rover Evoque features as part of product placement.