Netflix to offer $30K grants to four Arab writers

Netflix has partnered with The Middle East Media Initiative (MEMI) to offer $30,000 grants to four Arab writer in an effort to boost Arabic storytelling.

MEMI selects a dozen or more up-and-coming writers from the region and invites them to Los Angeles for 5-weeks annually. There, they join a workshop to share their ideas in a writer’s room of professional American showrunners.

As part of the collaboration, Netflix has selected four writers — Sultan Tamer (Saudi), Summer Shesha (Saudi), Ahmed Essam Elsayed (Egypt), and writing partners Karim Ariqat and Mohammad Ali Al Nablsea (Jordan), for the same.

These writers will be allowed six months to use the funds and work on their content. At the end of the term, they are supposed to pitch the fully developed stories to Netflix.

Speaking of the partnership, Deana Nassar Fernandez, Netflix’s Grow Creative Manager for the Middle East and North Africa, said: “We have an ongoing partnership with MEMI to support emerging and established talent from the region.

“As we work to tell more stories from the Arab world that can be loved globally, we’re collaborating with industry partners to equip storytellers with the tools they need to tell the best version of their stories.

“Together with our creative partners, we want to do more to invest in and empower those in the industry, and those on the cusp of breaking through. This partnership is an important milestone in helping us identify the next generation of writers from the Arab world.”

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