Women filmmakers have beautiful, complex, and nuanced stories to tell – stories which have the power to resonate with people not just in the Arab world, but across the globe. Arab women have been telling these stories for decades.
On July 7th, Netflix is celebrating these stories and storytellers by releasing a catalog of 21 films by female filmmakers spanning various genres including documentary, drama, and romance, via a dedicated collection titled ‘Because She Created’.
The collection includes the works of critically acclaimed directors from Algeria, Egypt, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Morocco, Palestine, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Syria, and Tunis, and celebrates the creativity of the Arab world’s greatest female storytellers. While these stories are distinctly and authentically Arab, the themes will resonate with women across the world, uniting women from all walks of life through beautiful and poignant series and film.
Cinematic masterpieces like ‘Let’s Talk’ by Marianne Khoury dive into the life of legendary Egyptian Director Youssef Chahine, Nariss Nejjar’s ‘Stateless’ reflects on North African history from a female perspective, Suha Arraf’s ‘Villa Touma’, Leyla Bouzid’s ‘A Tale of Love and Desire’, Fatma Zamoun’s multi-character drama ‘Parkour’ and Suzannah Mirghani’s ‘Al-Sit’ – all bring fresh, unique, and underrepresented narratives to life with the female perspective front and center.
The collection features many other stories that amplify the work of Arab women behind the camera, amplifying underrepresented voices and giving more people a chance to see their lives reflected on screen. We hope these voices provide inspiration for the wider creative community and highlight the importance of equitable representation storytelling, and why it matters. We’re proud to be working towards filling the pipeline of women in entertainment in the region. More women behind the camera also have a ripple effect for women in front of it.
Netflix launched the ‘Because She Created’ platform last year as a virtual panel discussion hosting Arab women filmmakers to talk about the evolving role of women in the Arab film industry. Following its success, we also teamed up with the Cairo International Film Festival to host the second edition of Because She Created as a fireside chat with renowned actress Hend Sabry. Our ambition with this collection is to showcase the work of female filmmakers from around the Arab world so that more stories made in the Arab world can be loved globally.