The director of the hit Liam Neeson film Taken, Pierre Morel, has helmed an Emirati action flick scheduled to be released on November 25 across the GCC.
Called Al Kameen (The Ambush), the film is based on the true story of a daring mission by a group of Emirati soldiers who set off to rescue their compatriots trapped by rebel fighters in a mountainous valley.
Entertainment company Image Nation Abu Dhabi, which is co-producing the film with AGC International, an arm of AGC Studios in the US, released the first trailer for the film on Monday. It comes after a 42-second action-packed teaser was released in October, which showed Emirati soldiers in the midst of a fierce gun battle as insurgents surround them.
Written by Brandon Birtell (Furious 7) and Kurtis Birtell (Medal of Honour) in close consultation with the soldiers involved in the real-life ambush situation that inspired the plot, Al Kameen was entirely shot in the UAE. It is one of the biggest Arabic feature films produced in the GCC, with more than 400 cast and crew, Image Nation Abu Dhabi said. The lead cast is made up of all Emirati actors, including Marwan Abdullah Saleh, Khalifa Albhri, Khalifa Al Jassem and Mohammed Ahmed.
“Al Kameen tells the incredible story of a small group of soldiers demonstrating courage, heroism and brotherhood in unimaginable circumstances. Working with a fantastic cast and crew in the stunning natural landscapes of the UAE, we have created a truly compelling story that is true, both visually and culturally, to its real-life inspiration," Morel said.
Hana Kazim, manager of local film and television at Image Nation Abu Dhabi and Al Kameen's development executive, compared the film to Hollywood action flicks Black Hawk Down, Saving Private Ryan and Dunkirk.
"The film is unlike anything we have done before in the UAE – the production featured the largest-ever cast and crew for an Arabic-language production in the GCC, bringing together local, regional and international talent to tell this inspirational narrative," she said.
Image Nation Abu Dhabi said a team of Emirati filmmakers and cultural consultants were also involved in the production.
Morel's 2008 film Taken stars Neeson as an ex-CIA agent who mercilessly hunts down human traffickers who've kidnapped his daughter and her friend while on holiday in France. The film was a massive global hit, raking in $226.8 million against a production budget of $25 million. The French director's last film was the Jennifer Garner vigilante action movie Peppermint, released in 2018.
Besides Emirati films, Image Nation Abu Dhabi has produced a number of international hits, including the Oscar-winning 2011 drama The Help and the Denzel Washington movie Flight in 2012.
Al Kameen is in cinemas across the region from Thursday, November 25