×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Rocket Science, Front Row Form Yalla Yalla to Serve Middle East

Middle East distributor and producer Front Row Filmed Entertainment and production, finance and sales company Rocket Science have entered into a joint venture to form Yalla Yalla, a Dubai-based film and television company focused on Arabic-language entertainment.

Yalla Yalla will develop, package, produce and finance television and feature film projects for the fast expanding Middle East and North Africa market, with a view to expanding beyond the region. The team has already been active in acquiring remake rights as well as developing original content for both theatrical and television with the aim of having four feature films and two television series produced within the first 18 months.

Rocket Science will leverage its talent, producing and financing relationships in the U.S. and Europe, while Front Row and its partner, Kuwait National Cinema Company, will harness their regional relationships with filmmakers, tastemakers and financiers.

The company will collaborate with former Wild Bunch head of acquisitions, Rita Dagher, who will serve as a creative producer. Dagher’s credits include “A Prayer Before Dawn,” “Miss Julie,” “Four Lions” and “Fahrenheit 9/11.” She is in the process of staffing up the Dubai team.

Gianluca Chakra of Front Row Filmed Entertainment, and Rocket Science’s Thorsten Schumacher said: “Establishing this new venture felt natural to us and the timing couldn’t be more perfect. Both company’s complementary expertise, relationships and positioning create a solid foundation to make this company thrive as the leading content player in the Middle East as the MENA market expands. Rita’s experience and knowledge in the region and internationally will be key in identifying projects and local talent and bringing these projects to life.”

Dagher added: “The Middle East, including North Africa, thrives with powerful stories waiting to be told. Yalla Yalla will provide a home for a new wave of exciting and diverse filmmakers with unique voices to tell their stories and embrace all kinds of genres and formats. Our intention is to encourage filmmakers to go into new directions and be part of, not just the Arab world, but also an international one.”

Rocket Science’s Cannes slate includes Ana Lily Amirpour’s reboot of “Cliffhanger”; Hallie Meyer’s “Shyer’s Goodrich,” starring Michael Keaton; Azazel Jacobs’ “French Exit,” starring Michelle Pfeiffer, Lucas Hedges and Tracy Letts; Michael Wech and Hanns-Bruno Kammertöns’s documentary “Schumacher,” based on Formula One driver Michael Schumacher; Aron Gaudet and Gita Pullapilly’s “Queenpins,” starring Leslie Jones and Kristen Bell; Aaron Sorkin’s “The Trial of the Chicago 7,” with Eddie Redmayne, Sacha Baron Cohen and Seth Rogen; Amirpour’s “Blood Moon,” starring Kate Hudson; Gary Shore’s “Queen Mary”; and Jonathan Jakubowicz’s “Resistance,” starring Jesse Eisenberg, which is in post-production.

More Film

  • Brightburn review

    Film Review: 'Brightburn'

    “Superman” meets “The Omen” in “Brightburn,” a watchable but super-silly mix of superheroics and evil-child horror that mashes together singularly uninspired ideas from both. Offering R-rated fantasy competition to “Aladdin” this Memorial Day weekend, it should do OK with undiscriminating audiences seeking familiar, forgettable genre thrills. But the franchise prayers that an open-ended fadeout dangles [...]

  • Aladdin

    Film Review: Will Smith in 'Aladdin'

    Of all the characters in Walt Disney Studios’ canon, is there any more animated than the Genie from “Aladdin”? In 1992, old-school cartooning seemed the only way to keep up with comedian Robin Williams’ rapid-fire sense of humor and free-associative gift for improvisation. Much of the appeal of the original “Aladdin” came thanks to the [...]

  • Cannes: European Auteurs Launch Appeal to

    Cannes: European Auteurs Launch Appeal to Get E.U. Elections Vote Out

    A group of 500 prominent European auteurs – including heavyweights attending Cannes such as Céline Sciamma, Pawel Pawlikowski, and Luc and Jean-Pierre Dardenne – have launched an impassioned appeal to citizens of the 28 European Union nations to get out the vote at the upcoming May 23-26 E.U. parliamentary elections. “It is true, Europe is hardly [...]

  • Photograph by Svetlana Cvetko

    Blitz Films' Eryl Cochran Talks About Indie Film in Challenging Market

    Eryl Cochran heads production & development at production and financing shingle Blitz Films, where she works alongside company founders, filmmakers Nikolay and Sergey Sarkisov. Blitz, launched in 2018, is carving out a niche in the indie world with an eye for emerging talent. Blitz’s slate includes “Show Me What You Got,” directed by cinematographer Svetlana [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content