UAE’s Nayla Al Khaja has teamed up with the Oscar-winning Indian composer for her upcoming feature film ‘Baab'.

Music composer AR Rahman (L) and filmmaker Nayla Al Khaja (R)Twitter/ NaylaAlKhaja, AR Rahman
Flix Wednesday, May 11, 2022 - 20:49

The first woman filmmaker in the United Arab Emirates, Nayla Al Khaja is teaming with Oscar-winning music composer AR Rahman for her upcoming feature film Baab. The film is written by Al Khaja and Masoud Amralla Al Ali. As per Variety’s report, Baab follows the story of Wahida, who is unable to make sense of her twin sister's mysterious death and is plagued by a haunting rhythm in her ears. She discovers hidden cassette tapes and her relentless pursuit of the truth begins to untangle unresolved grief taking her deep into the mountains to delve into the complexities of the human soul. 

Speaking about the film, AR Rahman told Variety, “I'm delighted to be working with Nayla on her feature film Baab, she's a passionate and promising filmmaker and an important creative voice within the Gulf region. The script is enigmatic, thought-provoking and promises to be both visually and emotionally engaging for universal audiences. I'm looking forward to the journey."

Meanwhile, filmmaker Nayla Al Khaja said, "My grandmother came from the mountains, they have never been captured in a feature before, the sheer access to the indigenous people of Ras Al Khaimah and the soulful script is an untold story that I am eager to tell. With A.R. Rahman on board, we will live a very immersive journey that is authentic, haunting and real.” Al Khaja is known for her shorts such as Malal and The Road to Fulfilment. She is making her feature debut with Three, which is scheduled to go into production later this year. 

The team will begin shooting in March 2023 in the northern Emirate of Ras Al Khaimah, which will provide the film's backdrop of dramatic vistas of the Jais mountains.

Rahman recently set up the Firdaus Studio as part of Expo 2020 Dubai and mentored the Firdaus Orchestra, an all-woman ensemble of 50 musicians from 23 Arab countries.

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