Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 15 October 2019

Mohammed Saeed Harib's 'Rashid & Rajab' wins global deal at Cannes

The US-based AGC studios have picked up the comedy for global distribution

‘Rashid & Rajab’ stars Shadi Alfons, left and Marwan Abdullah Saleh. Courtesy Image Nation Abu Dhabi
‘Rashid & Rajab’ stars Shadi Alfons, left and Marwan Abdullah Saleh. Courtesy Image Nation Abu Dhabi

Mohammed Saeed Harib’s forthcoming Rashid & Rajab, an Image Nation Abu Dhabi film that premieres in the UAE ahead of a general release over Eid, has been acquired by international sales agent AGC International, in a deal signed at the Cannes Film Festival.

AGC International, the international sales and distribution arm of AGC Studios in Hollywood, will provide Rashid & Rajab with a platform to be distributed to exhibitors, broadcasters and streaming platforms globally. The comedy already has distribution in the Mena region via Tanweer Films, with its high-profile Eid release throughout the GCC and an Egyptian release scheduled for later in the summer.

Shot on location in Dubai, the UAE production is the first live-action feature film from Emirati director Harib, best known as the creator of the popular animated TV series Freej. The film was produced by Emirati filmmakers Ali Mostafa (The Worthy and From A to B) and Majid Alansari (Zinzana), alongside Breakout Film’s Rami Yasin (Shabab Sheyab).

The family-friendly body-swap comedy follows wealthy Emirati executive Rashid (Marwan Abdullah Saleh) and carefree Egyptian fast-food deliveryman Rajab (Shadi Alfons), who switch bodies after a freak accident on their way to work. As they desperately look for a way to revert to their former selves, the unlikely pair gain a different perspective into each other’s lives.

The deal follows recent successes from Image Nation Abu Dhabi, with its legal drama Justice picked up globally as a Netflix Original, and a Best Documentary Academy Award for its international co-production Free Solo. Stuart Ford, chairman and chief executive of AGC Studios, said: “We are delighted to be working with our partners at Image Nation Abu Dhabi to bring this delightful comedy to worldwide audiences, and this helps confirm AGC’s support for growing Arabic cinema worldwide.”

Ben Ross, chief content officer at Image Nation Abu Dhabi, added: “Having Stuart and AGC Studios supporting Rashid & Rajab on an international level is a testament to the film’s universal charm and appeal. We can’t wait for audiences in the UAE and around the world to see the film.”

Updated: May 20, 2019 06:59 PM

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