Abu Dhabi, April 18: Families in the UAE will be able to see the award-winning Emirati film Going to Heaven as it is released in cinemas on April 28. The film will screen in theatres across the UAE, including Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Al Ain, Fujairah.
Co-produced by Image Nation Abu Dhabi, one of the leading media and entertainment companies in the Middle East, and Cine Vision Art Production, Going to Heaven is the second feature film directed by award-winning director Saeed Salmeen Al Murry. Other titles in his slate include feature film Sun Dress (2010) and short film Bint Mariam (2008), which has won over 13 awards internationally.
‘I am immensely proud of Going to Heaven; it is a beautiful story that highlights an extremely important issue in the Emirati family scene – the ties between young and older members of the family. I’m looking forward to being able to show the rich landscape of the UAE on the big screen’, comments Director Saeed Salmin Al Murry.
The film, which had its world premiere at Dubai International Film Festival 2015 and picked up the Muhr Emirati Award for best feature film, tells the story of two Emirati boys Sultan and Saud.
At the tender age of 11, young Sultan feels at loss with the world. Limited by the constraints of his unkind Stepmother, he yearns for the warmth of his maternal Grandmother who has been estranged from the family. With the help of his best friend Saud, he embarks on a pursuit across the Emirates to find the missing piece to his puzzle, encountering fundamental life lessons along the way.
Going to Heaven was filmed entirely in the UAE, giving movie-goers the chance to see Abu Dhabi, Sharjah, Fujairah and Dubai on the big screen. The film also stars two first-time Emirati actors and real life brothers – 14-year-old Ahmed Ibrahim Al Zaabi and 12-year-old Jumma Ibrahim Al Zaabi.
Amer Al Murry, Going to Heaven producer said: ‘Going to Heaven is a great example of the importance of family in the Emirati culture and the story, with its surprise twist, is what built my excitement to want to produce this movie. Shooting at many locations spread over the UAE required a lot of effort but the credit has to go to the director who managed the team seamlessly.’
The film adds to Image Nation’s already impressive local slate, which currently includes Emirati psychological thriller Zinzana and Ali Mostafa’s third feature film The Worthy, which is set to be released later this year. The family drama also stars Fatima Al Taei, who plays the lead actress in Image Nation’s landmark legal television drama Justice.
Ben Ross, Head of Narrative at Image Nation, explains; ‘We are extremely pleased to be involved in this project, which utilizes a tremendously talented local cast and crew. Image Nation is committed to investing in films such as this to further strengthen the UAE film industry and this is a great example of the productions we endeavour to make and support’.
The film is supported by the Support Arab Cinema campaign, which aims to increase awareness about Arab films and encourage both local and expat audiences to watch them.
Cameron Mitchell, CEO of Majid Al Futtaim Cinemas- VOX Cinemas, adds; ‘We’re so pleased to be promoting a truly Emirati film. We think both local and expat families across the nation will appreciate the sentimental story and we look forward to opening in cinemas this month.’
The regional premiere of Going to Heaven will take place in Abu Dhabi on April 25 and in Dubai on April 26, with the film opening to the public on April 28.