Haifaa Al-Mansour Calls for Female Saudi Voices in the Conversation

2 min read

Saudi director Haifaa Al-Mansour, known for her groundbreaking work, is making a significant impact in the world of film and television. Her journey began with “Wadjda,” the first film shot entirely in Saudi Arabia. Fast forward to the present, and Saudi cinema has witnessed remarkable growth, and Al-Mansour has become a sought-after television director in Hollywood. However, she remains committed to nurturing young talents, particularly Saudi women in the film and television industry.

Al-Mansour recently collaborated with Film AlUla on the AlUla Creates Film Program, aiming to support and mentor Saudi women filmmakers. The program selected four promising talents who received short film grants and mentorship. These projects stand out not only for their refined voices but also for their distinct and personal stories.

For Al-Mansour, fostering this emerging talent is essential, as Saudi Arabia’s film industry is becoming highly competitive, and it’s crucial to ensure that women have their place. She emphasizes the significance of distinct voices and encourages filmmakers, male or female, to draw inspiration from their life experiences, heritage, and history.

Al-Mansour’s journey with these young filmmakers reignited her passion, reminding her of the thrill she felt when making “Wadjda.” Despite the progress for women in the film industry, challenges persist. Al-Mansour highlights the struggle for opportunities and stresses that while the field has widened, it remains challenging.

She also discusses her move to television, driven by her desire to stay active and continuously improve her craft. Al-Mansour values the learning experiences she gains from each project, whether it involves zombies in “The Walking Dead” or comedies like “Florida Man.” Her passion and commitment to her work remain unwavering, and she has an exciting Saudi crime movie on the horizon, currently in the funding stage.

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