Saudi Arabian multi-hyphenate Hisham Faghih (“Barakah meets Barakah”) and young producer Sultan Tamer are launching DH’BAB Productions, an innovative indie film and TV production shingle based in the US and Saudi Arabia that aims to bridge the gap between the two countries. .
A stand-up comedian, actor, writer and producer, Faghih (pictured above) was a pioneer in the Saudi film and television industry, which is now experiencing a boom following the 2017 lifting of a religion-related ban on cinema. Faghih posted a satirical video titled “No Woman, No Drive” on YouTube in 2013, which became the most popular YouTube video in the country and may have played a role in the movement to lift Saudi’s ban on female drivers in late 2017. He also acted in it. and co-produced the Toronto-premiering “Baraka Meets Barakah,” the groundbreaking 2016 rom-com shot in Saudi before the ban was lifted.
Faghih most recently served as director of the Middle Eastern Media Initiative (MEMI) at USC’s School of Cinematic Arts, a training and mentoring program launched in 2018 to advance the careers of Arabic TV writers and producers.
Tamer is a graduate of NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts who executive-produced Cesar Martinez’s multiple award-winning exile doc “Dial Home,” which screened in the New Yorker’s screening room. He has produced and directed viral music videos for Saudi pop artist Mishal, including the video for his song “Arabian Nights” which currently has 3.6 million views on YouTube.
The new company’s first project is the horror film “Desolation”, written and developed by Faghih. According to a statement this classic horror film “exemplifies the ethos of DH’BAB, mixing elements of the found footage sub-genre with a more cerebral approach.” In the pipeline is an unspecified TV series being directed by Temer and given a development grant by Netflix.
DH’BAB’s mission is to “tell these stories through an Arab lens, both in the U.S. and in global markets” and also to “showcase the diversity that is the beating heart of the world. [Middle East] region and the unique and original stories that come from it,” the statement said.
DH’BAB is represented by CAA and Los Angeles-based entertainment lawyer Andrew Cutrow.