Films made in Dubai during virus pandemic spread hope - GulfToday

Films made in Dubai during virus pandemic spread hope


Dino Morea, Sheikha Hend Al Qassemi and Zenofar Fathima at the launch of ‘Checkmate.’

Imran Mojib, Special Correspondent

It was a tough year as well as a year of awakening for the whole of humanity. One just has to carry on his usual work with courage, said Zenofar Fathima, a Dubai-based filmmaker-actress who has produced seven short films during the pandemic.

“The year 2020, though met with uncertainty, gave us an opportunity to create cinematic content that not only interests the general public, but also resonates with them on a deeper level,” she said.


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Among the seven short films made by Zenofar during the pandemic, “Hope,” “Tomorrow Never Came” and “The Wave” were warmly received by the audience on social media platforms.

“Hope” is a narrative focusing on suicidal ideation and depression during COVID-19, “Tomorrow Never Came” is a tribute to doctors and frontline warriors fighting the pandemics, and “The Wave” highlights the potential aftermath of failing to take precautions against COVID-19. 

Following success of these short films, the Dubai-based filmmaker-actress embarked on another ambitious cinematic venture, “Checkmate.” The film marks the inception of her first web series, The Ouija Series, with its first episode, titled “Checkmate.”

“Checkmate” follows the story of a woman, played by Zenofar, afflicted by unfavourable circumstances. Convinced that she has lost out on every opportunity to turn her life around, she comes vis-a-vis with an omniscient being, who guarantees her a one-way ticket to success.

While “Checkmate” focuses on delivering an exhilarating edge-of-the-seat narrative, Zenofar’s signature element of social awareness is quite apparent in the 20-minute episode.

“Like my other films, ‘Checkmate’ also encompasses a parable type element to show the people something that could very easily happen in their own lives. That has always been how we engage our audiences. Because when something resonates with you, it will always reel you in. This includes movies, books, plays, anything,” said Zenofar.

The Ouija Series focuses on the supernatural as well as the infamous spirit board, while also delves into the psychological horror genre.

The film was recently launched in Dubai with special guests like Bollywood actor-producer Dino Morea and Emirati businesswoman and philanthropist Sheikha Hend Al Qassemi, in attendance.  The remaining six episodes of the Ouija Series will star both local and Bollywood talents, and expected to be released on an exclusive OTT platform.

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