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First Kuwaiti horror movie to be set in ‘haunted’ palace – Chilling news for film buffs

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Group photo of the ‘Al Qaser’ movie cast including the Director and some of the actors

Kuwait’s TV soaps and theatrical plays are among the best in the region and second most popular after Egypt in the Middle East. Still the nascent film industry is not very popular. Which is why one group of filmmakers want to give it a jolt by producing the first Kuwaiti horror movie. A few years ago, a local horror play was presented and it turned to be very successful, as it ran for a long time and was followed by many other horror plays.

Following the success of this genre, Kuwaiti director Nader Al-Haddad has prepared the scenario for a Kuwait horror movie titled ‘Al Qaser’ (The Palace), which will be shot in the abandoned castle of Sheikh Abdullah Al-Mubarak Al-Sabah. “The events of the movie will all happen in one night, and this makes it special.

In the past I didn’t like horror movies, but the idea just flashed in my head and I decided to make one. A producer brought me the text of a horror movie which was full of errors, so I decided to write a new script myself,” Haddad told Kuwait Times. The movie is a mix of satire, horror and crime. “I brought about 50 old horror movies and started to watch and study them. I learned about terrifying the audience through music and the surprise factor. I was living in these movies and my own imagination and inspiration. Then I started writing the story of my movie after I saw the palace and took a tour of it. This palace has been abandoned for many years, and some members of the team were a bit scared, but they got used to it,” said Haddad.

This movie consists of about 80 scenes. “These scenes will take me about 25 days, as I will be only shooting about five scenes a day. The movie will be between 90 to 105 minutes long. I’m keen to come out with a good quality work of international standard. I won’t be using cinematic tricks or modern computer effects, and will depend on pure filming. The scenario of the movie will be based on suspense rather than special effects, and this was my challenge,” he said.

The movie will be shown in Kuwaiti theatres, but Haddad has bigger plans. “We are planning to show Al Qaser in theatres around the GCC countries. I hope it will be ready for an Eid Al Fitr release. This is my first cinema experience, and after this film I will only focus on cinema and will leave TV dramas, on which I worked my whole life,” Haddad stated. A team of about 50 people is working on this movie. “I have chosen the cast mostly of veteran actors according to the roles, but I have also chosen a few young actors. A child is participating in this movie as well. The whole production is supported by Sheikh Duaij Al-Khalifa, which encouraged me to insist on high quality work,” concluded Haddad.

Al Qaser is produced by Nawaf Al-Shiteili, Haddad and Adel Al-Anezi from Art Dimension Co. The cast includes Jamal Al-Radhan, Ali Jumaa, Emad Al-Akari, Mubarak Sultan, Ahmad Al-Hleel and others. To announce the preparation and beginning of the shooting of Al Qaser, the organizer held a press conference earlier this week at Akeiraa restaurant, which was attended by some of the cast, the director, producers and media.

By Nawara Fattahova

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This article was published on 26/03/2015