Iraq’s Film Industry Hits Bottom

On the other hand, the Cinema and Theater Department announced: “There are seven movies, namely Najm al Bakkal, Baghdad Hilm Wardi,  Ahlam al-Yakaza, al-Hayat al-Chaika, al-Siyab, al-Jaysh al-Iraqi and Birj Badel, which are now ready to be shown in what [the ministry] hopes will reveal Baghdad’s radiant culture, [which is a symbol of the country’s] civilization, peace and creativity.”

Film activities involved in the “Baghdad, the capital of Arab culture for 2013” celebration, seem attractive, given that they promise to revive the film industry in Iraq. Yet, this collides with the same intrinsic facts about the value of film production in a country that is not familiar with the culture of viewing films in movie theaters, which do not meet the minimum expectations of Iraqis for a cultural space that was a source of knowledge and high-end entertainment before 1990.

Ali Abdulameer is a contributing writer for Al-Monitor’s Iraq Pulse. A writer, journalist and TV presenter residing in Amman and Washington, he was editor-in-chief of a number of cultural magazines and Iraqi newspapers, and was the managing editor of Iraqi news in the Arabic-language American Al-Hurrah. Abdulameer presented a show entitled "Seven Days" from 2004 to 2010. He is currently working as a correspondent for Al-Hayat.

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