NEOM partners with Korean Film Council to prepare next generation of Saudi filmmakers


Saudi Arabia’s MBC Group launches ‘Sukkar’ film with much fanfare in Riyadh

RIYADH: Following its successful premiere in Cairo and Dubai, the movie “Sukkar” was launched with much fanfare by Saudi Arabia’s MBC Group in Riyadh on Wednesday night, attended by cast members, journalists and leading figures from the film industry.

The celebration was held at Muvi Cinemas – Boulevard Riyadh City, with the stars interacting with fans and posing for photographs before the screening.

The movie is an adaptation of the well-known 1912 epistolary novel “Daddy-Long-Legs,” which was made into a successful film starring Fred Astaire in 1955.

It revolves around the diaries of a group of children and teenagers who live in an orphanage and cooperate to face their difficult life circumstances under the harsh management of their orphanage boss, Ratiba.

One of the stars of the movie is Saudi Arabian actress Hajar Mohammed, who plays Tina, a quiet girl who gets into trouble in the effort to pursue a better life within the orphanage.

“This is my first time participating in a big movie like this and since it’s my first time, seeing such a huge crowd lining up to watch the movie makes me very happy, and I hope this is not my last time,” Mohammed told Arab News.

“I can’t describe the happiness that I am feeling, so thanks to everyone who participated in making the dream come true.”

Moataz Hisham, the Egyptian star who portrays Tarik, an ambitious footballer with dreams of becoming famous one day, was thrilled to visit Riyadh for the first time.

“I am very happy that we are premiering this movie in Riyadh, and I am happy to see the huge audience who appeared today to watch the movie.”  

The movie features an impressive ensemble cast including Yasmina El-Abd, Hajar Mohammad, Wedeema Ahmed, Maria Jumaah, Moataz Hisham, Mohammad Al-Harbi, Bavly Remon, and the talents of twins Abdullah and Omar Khaled. It also showcases original songs written by Hamada and is scored by the accomplished Egyptian composer Ehad Abdel Wahed.

Heba Mashari Hamada, the scriptwriter and composer behind the original lyrics of “Sukkar,” envisions the film to deeply resonate with children.

In a conversation with Arab News, Hamada described “Sukkar” as a “unique singing performance” meticulously crafted to provide a “safe and memorable experience for children,” distinguished by its superior quality and unique standards.

“I hope it brings immense joy to both the children and their parents, etching a positive imprint on their future memories,” she said.

Emirati actress Wadeema Ahmed, portraying Najma in the movie, shared her excitement about being in Riyadh.

“One of the biggest challenges during the filming of the musical was the location difference — filming was in Egypt while I’m based in the Emirates,” she explained.

“So, there was a lot of traveling back and forth, but in the end, it was definitely worth it.”

Every filming location, from the orphanage and Fruto Palace to the city and sewage channels, was meticulously developed. All the decorations used in the film are equally distinctive, designed exclusively for this project.

The film was brought to life by MBC Studios with support from Egypt’s Aroma Productions, and distributed by Beirut’s Empire Entertainment.

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