Strengthening the Pipeline of Women Behind the Camera in the Arab World


We are committed to telling stories about and by women across our slate in the Arab world. The Arab world has a long-standing history of women in entertainment, and we’ve had incredible successes and firsts from the region that we’re all very proud of. But in order to give more people a chance to see their lives reflected on screen, we need more women behind and in front of the camera.

To that effect, we have partnered with the Arab Fund for Arts and Culture which will provide a one-time grant of $250,000 to women producers and directors in the Arab world through the Netflix Fund for Creative Equity

We have shortlisted five projects spearheaded by women from Tunisia, Lebanon, and Morocco – all of whom are eager to tell stories that are unique and authentic to them but carry universal themes that transcend languages and cultures.

Asmae El Moudir is a director and producer from Morocco whose film, ‘The Mother of All Lies’ has been shortlisted for the non-fiction category. Diala Kachmar (From the other shore), Jana Wehbe (The Day Vladimir Died) and Tania Khoury (Manity) – all exceptional female producers from Lebanon are spearheading three exciting fiction projects, and Sarra Abidi – director and producer from Tunisia is excited to bring her story, My Name Is Clara, to life on screen. 

While they hail from different cities/regions and have different specialities — some are producers, some are writers and some are directors — all the women receiving support share a common urge to tell stories that haven’t been told before and tackle subjects often considered unconventional for women.

Netflix’s Fund for Creative Equity aims to help create new opportunities for underrepresented communities within the entertainment industry.

“More and more Arab women filmmakers are creating moving images that have the power to shed light on the realities of the region. This second collaboration with Neftlix, this time to support women in the field of cinema, complements perfectly AFAC’s mission to promote diversity of voices and narratives,” stated Rima Mismar, AFAC’s Executive Director.

This initiative continues our commitment to amplifying women’s voices as we work with both established creators and new voices in the Arab world to tell more layered and multidimensional stories.  It builds on our work to date with shows like Al Rawabi School for Girls and Finding Ola all of which hail from women, for women.

We strive to be a meaningful part of the Arab world’s creative industries – building the right opportunities, amplifying underrepresented voices, and ultimately bringing fresh and authentic Arab content to our members around the globe.

JoAnn Kharma

Communications Manager, Middle East & North Africa