Groundbreaking Saudi romantic comedy “Barakah Meets Barakah,” about the complexities of dating in Saudi Arabia, has been acquired for distribution across the Arab world by Cairo and Abu Dhabi-based Mad Solutions and Dubai-based shingle Fortress Film Clinic, which have forged a multi-pic joint distribution pact.
“Barakah,” pictured, which is helmed by first-timer Mahmoud Sabbagh, depicts young Saudi lovers circumventing tradition, etiquette and the country’s religious police. Pic screened in the Berlinale’s Panorama section. It is produced by Jeddah-based El Housh Prods.
Fortress Film Clinic, which was launched last year, is a joint venture between Mohamed Hefzy’s prominent Cairo-based Film Clinic production shingle and Dubai-based private equity find Fortress Capital Investments Group.
The other titles Mad and Fortress will be co-distributing in Arab territories, albeit under the Mad Solutions label, are Egyptian director Sherif El Bendary’s “Ali, the Goat and Ibrahim,” about a young man who believes his late girlfriend’s soul has been reincarnated in a goat, co-produced by Fortress Film Clinic, Transit Films, and French film production company Arizona Prods., now in post; and Palestinian director Rashid Masharawi’s “Writing on Snow” about the roots of different sub-groups in Palestinian society and also within Arab communities at large, and how these divisions contribute to religious extremism. “Writing on Snow,” which is being co-produced by Fortress Film Clinic and Cinetelefilms, is scheduled to start shooting in March.