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Netflix’s first Arabic original: 6 things you need to know

How well do you know your friends? What if everything they showed you was a façade? And behind their masks, teemed secrets and emotions that shouldn’t see the light of day. These questions arise when a group of friends hang out during the pandemic and decide to play a game that reveals secrets and darker desires. 

Welcome to the setting of ‘Perfect Strangers’, Netflix’s first Arabic original, set to release on January 20, 2022.

Here are 6 things you need to know.

Features the Middle East’s best

The film stars a smorgasbord of Arabic talent from actress and filmmaker Nadine Labaki, to Mona Zaki (30 Years Ago, Scheherazade: Tell Me A Story, Escaping Tel Aviv), Adel Karam (The Insult, Caramel, Netflix’s Live From Beirut), Eyad Nassar (The Looming Tower, Sons of Rizk 2, The Blue Elephant 2), Diamand Bou Abboud (The Insult, The Sculptor, The Fixer) and Lebanese actor and playwright George Khabbaz (Under the Bombs, Ghadi, and co-writer of Capernaum).

This is actually the 18th Perfect Strangers

Originally a 2016 Italian comedy-drama, Perfect Strangers has been remade in many countries (Specifically 18 times). Thanks to the movie being remade in countries like France, Russia, and Greece, ‘Perfect Strangers’ actually holds a Guinness World Record for being the most remade film in cinema history. 

A troubled production saved by a lot of heart

Take a pandemic and add massive economic and political turmoil with a sprinkling of despair. It’s safe to say that Lebanon did not provide the most conducive environment for filmmakers. The production was postponed three times and was going to shift to Egypt. However, the producers continued to shoot to grow the filmmaking scene in Lebanon. 

Sooooooooooo many firsts! 

Along with being the first Arabic Netflix Original, the movie breaks ground a few more ways: 

  • The first time three Middle Eastern distribution companies produce a local-language film
  • The first collaboration between Lebanese Nadine Labaki and Egyptian actress Mona Zaki
  • The first Netflix feature from Lebanon, UAE, and Egypt

A post-pandemic production, through and through

Since the film was shot during a lockdown, the cast and crew lived together for a whole month in a hotel. Photographers, local and international press were also barred from the set and the hotel. 

From advertising to film

Since the film was shot during a lockdown, the cast and crew lived together for a whole month in a hotel. Photographers, local and international press were also barred from the set and the hotel. 

So set yourself a reminder for January 20, 2022 and let us know what you think about the movie!

The resident ursine of BuzZzing .com, Mahesh always be found jumping from one obsession to the other and sometimes even writes about them. While not juggling hobbies, writing, and existential crises, he tries to get people to call him Nakashima.

nakashima@buzzzing.ae

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