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Tuesday, December 10, 2013

'Acting Is My Life, Film Making Is Passion': Saudi Doctor

By Sameera Aziz | Jeddah

EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW  “Acting and film making is my hobby. I can’t live without acting. Though medical is a different field than arts and entertainment, but I am proud of being indulge in both of the fields in a balance way,” says Dr.Fahad Ghazoli, a top film maker from Saudi Arabia. 

Speaking to INN Live in an exclusive interview he asserted ‘’my spouse knew before marriage that I am into showbiz, so she supports me a lot to maintain my balance in both jobs – medical and entertainment media as well as home. I take vacations whenever I have showbiz activity either for acting or film making. However, it takes my hard work to manage both together,” he said.

Despite being a professional in a medical field, Dr. Fahad Ghazoli has been making the films since 6 years. He has made 21 films till now including his current venture ‘Lamar’ under his media company named ‘Kauther media’. He has made first Saudi horror movie Zomba and other films like Al-Wiswas, Al-Shak, Mubashir wa Lakin etc. He has been an actor since childhood. He acted first in the children stage play some 28 years ago. Since then, acting is running in his blood. He has done the acing in 14 plays around the world.

Ghazoli has 6 children and three of them are actors. “My 14 years old son Yusaf, 12 years old daughter Jawaher and 7 years old daughter Sahar do the acting,” said Ghazoli. Ghazoli took ‘direction and photography’ courses from various countries like Egypt, England, Qatar and Bahrain beside his Medical education. “Here in Saudi Arabia where film industry is in a very initial stage, you cannot take it as a full time job. We have to look for a different source of income as a bread winner of our family. Even as an actor, we can’t depend on the income we get from showbiz because sometimes we have work and sometimes we don’t have anything to do,” said Ghazoli. 

Ghazoli has good hopes for the success of Saudi cinema. “I am expecting the opening of cinemas in Saudi Arabia within upcoming 5-yrs and this will start a boom in Saudi film industry. We want the film distributors to take interest on our Saudi films as well to distribute them internationally”. 

“The new generation of Saudis is interested in acting and film making. Especially lots of young male and female Saudis are looking for the chance of acting. This is a good sign for the flourishing of entertainment media in Saudi Arabia.,” hopes Ghazoli. 

Ghazoli said that there are lots of film festivals out of Saudi Arabia which provide a good opportunity to present the Saudi films. “Right now, when we can’t present Saudi films inside the Kingdom commercially, I suggest that film festivals should be organized in various countries of the world just to present all the Saudi films,” recommended Ghazoli. 

Ghazoli said that after making a film, a producer in Saudi Arabia gets his money back gradually. “First income of the film comes by the advertisement. We also sale the film rights to a TV channel for a short film of 20 minutes duration in almost 100,000 SR . For example, Rotana TV channel encourages the Saudi films a lot and it buys the Saudi dramas and movies with keen interest,” told Ghazoli.

Lamar- another venture of Saudi film maker Dr Fahad Ghazoli
Regarding film Lamar, Ghazoli said that it is a short film of 20 minutes on the struggle of a working woman. “The idea of the film ‘Lamar’ was presented to me by the actor Yaseen Al-Moghayri who assisted me in the production works in this film and acted as well in this film. I liked the idea of ‘Lamar’ and decided to make this film as a producer and director. I also act in this film,” told Ghazoli.

‘Lamar’ is a nice film that presented the difficulties of the working women. Lots of men create the problems in the way of those women. They face lots of challenges and issues daily. This is not just a case in Saudi Arabia, but it is happening around the world,” mentioned Ghazoli. 

Besides presenting Lamar in upcoming international festivals, Ghazoli is aiming to make three more short movies soon like ‘Lahza min Fadlik (just a minute), Baqaya (remains) and Al-nafiza (window around the world). 

“Now the Saudi people are becoming camera friendly then earlier times because they like to see the dramas in TV. So, they appreciate when they watch us shooting the film or drama. If someone in public interrupts us during shooting, I convince him that we are educating the society by our film or play. Since we get official permissions for outdoor shootings from the Ministry of Information, so we show this permission to the trouble makers but t happens rarely,’ said Ghazoli.

 Ghazoli said in his message to the people that he wants an honest opinion of the people about Lamar. “We worked hard to make this film for audience. After presenting in festivals and releasing this film in any TV channel, I will release it in Youtube for the masses,” said Ghazoli. 

A Story Of Saudi Film On Working Women Makes Waves, Globally 
Lamar is a Saudi girl from a poor family. She is well ethical and well mannered. She wants to help her father financially. Her father is old and sick man. She is the only daughter and she has no brother. 

She gets a nice job but finds men around him making trouble for her by bribing her for bad intensions. She is offered for the cash amount and gifts unreasonably which she refused. 

The manager of her company is not a good man by character and he has bad intentions for Lamar as well same like other female staffers in his office. The driver of her company thinks that Lamar is also like the other women working in his company who are easy going. 

He actually thought Lamar is a girl friend of the manager. He talks rubbish with Lamar but when later he came to know that she is a woman with good moral, he changes his mind and asks for apology.  Manager tries to give a gift to Lamar but she refuses when she came to know the bad purpose of this needless gesture. 

Manager fires her from the job and Lamar gets into crises because her family is in severe need of money. Lamar faces a new challenge in life when her apartment owner asks for rent. The owner, who is an old man, wants to kick out Lamar and her family from home. Now the only way left for her is to marry the old man.  

There are two grooms for Lamar to marry her. One groom is young and handsome but with no money and with economic pains. The other groom is old man but with lots of money and monetary pleasures. 

However, the end of the film depends on the audiences’ own conclusion.  To whom Lamar chooses to marry?    

Realities in life are different from the scenarios which we see in movies and dramas by having a happy ending. But the final scene in life is not according to our own will and wishes. We have to take decision according to our circumstances and culture whether we like it or not. 
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