Magazine article Screen International

ADFF: Arabs Are the New 'Red Scare'

Magazine article Screen International

ADFF: Arabs Are the New 'Red Scare'

Article excerpt

Tunisian director Ferid Boughedir addressed Hollywood's depiction of the Middle East at the Abu Dhabi Film Festival.

Middle Eastern cinema is fighting to combat cliché's around Arabs and Muslims generated by Hollywood, according to a panel at the Abu Dhabi Film Festival.

The panel, titled Spotlight on Arab Directors' First Films, was asked if there was concern about the negative representation of people from the Middle East in US films.

Tunisian director Ferid Boughedir, whose 1990 debut Halfaouine: Boy of the Terraces is being screened at the festival, responded: "When we make a film we sometimes try to restore truth... One of our jobs is to fight against cliché and stereotypes.

"Previously, the enemy in Hollywood films was communism - the 'Red Scare'. After the fall of the Berlin Wall, there was a new enemy - the 'Green Scare'.

"The villain who used to be a bad Russian is now the bad Arab or the bad Muslim, who is always violent, a cheat, a liar."

Boughedir recalled how this attitude impacted the financing of his coming-of-age drama Halfaouine.

"Seeking co-production, I sent the script to ZDF in Germany," he said. "The film was going to show our culture from within, reflecting my experiences. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed


An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.