MPM Premium has acquired world sales rights to Ali Kalthami’s dark comedic crime thriller “Mandoob,” which will have its world premiere at the Toronto Film Festival in the Discovery section, one of three Saudi films selected by the event.
Set in Riyadh, the film centers on Fahad Algadaani, a mentally fragile man racing against time to pay for his ailing father’s medical treatment. His life takes an unexpected turn when he is fired from his call center job, and he is forced to make ends meet by working as a delivery driver (“mandoob” means courier in Arabic).
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A chance encounter uncovers a dark underbelly of the city — one thriving on illicit activities — and Fahad is confronted with a dangerous proposition that promises to solve all his monetary woes. Yet, this tantalizing opportunity comes at a great cost — he must risk everything he holds dear, including his principles and the fragile sanity he clings to.
Kalthami said in a statement: “Fahad’s personality drew me in because of his sincerity and his true search for solutions to deal with the pressures of life in a city that doesn’t wait for anyone. I was always drawn to underground subcultures in cities, and I know that Riyadh has many of these underground labyrinths and intersections and social phenomena that not many see in everyday life on the surface.”
“‘Mandoob’ follows Fahad’s story which interacts with these underground phenomena to become a real test for him and for the viewer. I think that all of us have a Fahad inside them, this person that struggles to reconcile his responsibilities and his ambitions with his feelings in a world that is moving way too fast and doesn’t pay him much attention.”
The screenplay was written by Kalthami and Mohammed Algarawi. The cast is led by Mohammed Aldokhei, Mohammed Alttowayan and Hajer Alshammari. Cinematography is by Ahmed Tahoun. The producers are Wael Abumansour, Mohammed Alhamoud, Abdulrahman Jarash and Alaa Faden. The production company is Telfaz11.
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