To stream in 190 countries

Streaming giant’s Netflix just announced that they brought the rights for six award-winning short films from Saudi startup Telfaz11 Studios – a big moment for cinema in the Kingdom.

Released under the tag of Six Windows in the Desert, the upcoming films shed a light on numerous social issues in Saudi Arabia and further. The six films tackle topics from social taboos and extremism, to the human psyche. The films will be available to watch in 190 countries from February 27.

With the release of the six films around the corner, Netflix put out a statement saying: ” Not only will Six Windows in the Desert offer global audiences a lens into the perspective of the Saudi creators, but also through the eyes of film characters with their own take on storytelling.”

Alaa Fadan, chief executive officer at Telfaz11 Studios also voice his excitement, saying that this deal with Netflix brought him “immense pride”.

“We are excited to bring the work of local Saudi talents to 167 million subscribers around the world. Telfaz11 Studios produces authentic and intriguing stories from our culture, and we cannot wait for the world to see what we have to offer.”

Here is the list of the six films:

27th of Shaban (2019)

Set in the early 2000s, Mohammed and Nouf meet for a date; an act that is prohibited in Saudi Arabia. The short-film directed by Mohamed Al Salman shows how the date unfolds.

Is Sumiyati going to Hell? (2016)

Told from the point of view of young Layan, the youngest child of a family who employs a housemaid named Sumyati. In the film, we see Sumyati having to deal with the racism of her employers, trying to survive. The short, which was directed by Meshal Al Jaser, won the Foreign Short Film at the Los Angeles Independent Film Festival Awards in 2017.

Predicament in Sight (2016)

This Fairs Godus sci-fi short is set in the 1970s, following the survivors of a plane crash which landed in an isolated desert area. The survivors are forced to co-exist after multiple attempts to communicate with the outside world fails.

The Rat (2018)

Fahad spends the last day of his life with the fear of his imposing and strict father looming over his head. Like a “rat on a wheel”, Fahad scurries through cycles of fear characterised by different aspects of his father and tries to break free. This film was written and directed by Faisal Al Amer.

Curtain (2018)

A female nurse trying to escape a life filled with traumatic events faces fear and judgement at her workplace. This film was directed by Mohamed Alsalman.

Wasati (2016)

Based on the true story of extremists attacking a theatre during a performance in Riyadh a decade ago, Wasati bela Wastiah (A Moderate without Moderation), retells the events from a different point of view. Directed by Ali Kalthami, Wasati won Best Director and Best Foreign Film at the Williamsburg Independent Film Festival in 2017.

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