You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Abu Dhabi ponies up for polo film

'Of Kings and Cowboys' in pre-production

With Abu Dhabi coming into focus as a major new source of film financing, the timing couldn’t be better for David Marlett‘s long-gestating film set in the world of polo.

Marlett has tapped into enough Abu Dhabi coin to move “Of Kings and Cowboys” into pre-production through investment banker Patrick Abas.

“With polo having originated in Persia, there’s plenty of interest in Abu Dhabi as a way to make a statement to the world,” says Abas.

With the seed money, Marlett shot a short version of the pic using polo and ranch properties near Santa Barbara. He plans next to shoot in Argentina and at many of the top polo clubs in the world, including Dubai.

Marlett, who describes himself as “a recovering attorney,” started writing “Of Kings and Cowboys,” while playing polo at Texas Tech. It’s based on his experiences growing up in West Texas, playing polo and working horses and cattle.

He aims to make two more horse-themed films — “Fast Women, Beautiful Horses”, and “Russian Warmblood” — through his BlueRun Prods. with producers Jim Green and Mark Bacino.

Popular on Variety

“People love and relate to the majesty of horses,” Marlett says. “They’re in every person’s DNA.”

And, he notes, horse movies have been good business. Current champ in the stable is “Seabiscuit,” which grossed nearly $150 million worldwide.

More Scene

  • Lily Tomlin Paley Honors

    Lily Tomlin Shares How She Wants 'Grace and Frankie' to End

    Lily Tomlin knows that all good things must come to an end. It was announced a few months ago that “Grace and Frankie” will bow out after Season 7 on Netflix, and on Thursday night, Tomlin shared how she would like the series to end, saying that she envisions herself and Jane Fonda “going out [...]

  • Laverne Cox Charlie's Angels

    How Laverne Cox Landed a Cameo in Elizabeth Banks' 'Charlie’s Angels'

    Laverne Cox officially earned her wings, scoring a role in Sony’s “Charlie’s Angels.” But she revealed her cameo almost didn’t happen. When the Emmy-nominee heard that Elizabeth Banks was directing the film, the longtime fan of the franchise (and of Banks herself) reached out about being part of the project. Cox had previously worked with [...]

  • Lena Waithe'The Inheritance' Broadway play opening,

    Lena Waithe, Anderson Cooper Attend Broadway Opening of 'The Inheritance'

    “The Inheritance” pulls viewers in many directions — toward pain and hope, trauma and healing. It’s what brought stars like Andy Cohen, Anderson Cooper, Sarah Jessica Parker, Matthew Broderick and Lena Waithe to Broadway on Sunday — a chance to heal, to remember and grieve. Also in attendance for the premiere at the Barrymore Theater [...]

  • Cybill ShepherdTrevorLIVE, Show, The Beverly Hilton,

    'The L Word' Co-Stars Cybill Shepherd and Jane Lynch Reunite at TrevorLive

    Fans of Showtime’s “The L Word” will be happy to hear that Cybill Shepherd eagerly reprised her on-screen romance with former co-star Jane Lynch on Sunday night at the TrevorLive Gala at the Beverly Hilton in Los Angeles. While accepting the champion Award, Shepherd kissed Lynch not one, but twice. The “Moonlighting” star was recognized [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content