The big-budget film is a co-production between Ithra and Film Clinic.
Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) premiered Hajjan, by Egyptian-Austrian writer and director Abu Bakr Shawky, as part of the TIFF Discovery Programme in its 48th edition. The festival will run until September 17, 2023.
TIFF Discovery Programme puts the spotlight on emerging directors and their first and second cinematic endeavours.
Produced by Mohamed Hefzy and Majed Zuhair Samman, with Rula Nasser as the co-producer, Hajjan is a collaboration between the King Abdul Aziz Center for World Culture (Ithra) and Film Clinic. The film will be distributed by Film Clinic Indie Distribution across the Arab world, while Yellow Camel will oversee production services in Saudi Arabia.
Penned by Omar Shama, Farrej Al-Mugfel, and Abu Bakr Shawky, Hajjan features Abdul Mohsen Al-Nimr, Omar Al-Atawi, Al-Shaimaa Tayeb, Azzam Al-Nimr, Tolin Barboud, and Ibrahim Al-Hassawi.
The film is a co-production between Saudi Arabia, Egypt and Jordan. The filmmaking journey unfolded across 21 days of shooting, set against the picturesque backdrop of Jordan’s landscapes, during the month of December 2022. The primary filming locales sprawled across the Wadi Rum region in southern Jordan, in addition to Dabbba, the southern enclave of the capital, Amman. Notably, this cinematic garnered substantial support from the Royal Film Commission, availing itself of the commission’s financial incentives.
Set in the captivating landscape of Saudi Arabia’s endless desert, the story revolves around the lives of two brothers, Matar and Ghanim. When tragedy strikes, young Matar embarks on a courageous journey in the world of camel racing to protect his beloved camel, Hofira. Recruited by the ruthless owner Jasser, Matar faces an arduous battle to safeguard Hofira’s life, in this coming-of-age drama.