‘Having spent more time in Abu Dhabi than in India over the last year, it certainly feels like a second home,’ says Salman Khan

29 October 2018
‘Having spent more time in Abu Dhabi than in India over the last year, it certainly feels like a second home,’ says Salman Khan

The star-studded cast and crew of Bollywood blockbuster ‘Bharat’ has successfully completed their shoot in Abu Dhabi, after an intensive 15 days of filming which included 10 Indian superstars and spanned across three locations and twofour54’s award-winning backlot.

The production shot in the stunning Liwa desert and purpose-built sets that replicated an oilfield in the 1970s were situated at Al Wathba and Al Ain. The production also made use of twofour54’s award-winning backlot at KIZAD, where they created an Arabian marketplace.

The international crew of more than 200 included twofour54 professionals who provided full production services, covering key areas such as location assistance, permits and equipment as well as catering, accommodation, travel and transportation. The crew for the shoot consisted of talent from India, Syria, Germany, Yemen and the UAE.

A locally-sourced cast of 10 talents from Germany, France, Ireland, Russia, Iran and Pakistan also feature in the scenes shot in Abu Dhabi, while twofour54 partner company Media Mania helped source the 1,400 extras needed for the production.

H.E. Maryam Eid AlMheiri, CEO of Media Zone Authority – Abu Dhabi and twofour54, who visited the production at Al Wathba, said: “Abu Dhabi is home to extraordinary filmmaking talent, as well as world-class facilities, locations and services that are drawing the best in the business to our shores, and I’m delighted that Salman Khan and his team have enjoyed another smooth and seamless shoot here.

“It has already been a remarkable year with four international productions shooting in Abu Dhabi. I believe it is a testament to the vision of our country’s leaders and the dedication and passion of our thriving media professionals that we have built a creative ecosystem that is attracting so many world-class filmmakers.”

Salman Khan said: “There are close cultural ties between India and Abu Dhabi, which is one of the reasons I love coming here – having spent more time in Abu Dhabi than in India over the last year, it certainly feels like a second home for me. It has been an exciting, thrilling and enjoyable experience to shoot ‘Bharat’ here. We have formed a strong partnership with twofour54 and the Abu Dhabi Film Commission and the highly impressive filmmaking talent in Abu Dhabi ensures we are producing movies that film fans love.”

‘Bharat’ director Ali Abbas Zaffar added: “Once again, it has been a pleasure to film in Abu Dhabi. This is a filmmakers’ paradise thanks to the diverse array of locations you can choose from and the incredible support and talent twofour54 provides.

“There are few places in the world where a director can solely focus on his vision for a movie, knowing that everything from locations to casting is taken care of, allowing the creative element to take place seamlessly.”

Due to release in cinemas during Eid Al Fitr 2019, ‘Bharat’ is an official adaptation of the 2014 Korean film, ‘Ode to My Father’, which depicted modern Korean history from the 1950’s to the present day through the life of an ordinary man. The movie is being produced by Reel Life Production Pvt, which is owned by Salman Khan’s sister, Alvira Khan Agnihotri, and brother-in-law, Atul Agnihotri. The cast also includes veteran star Jackie Shroff, Sunil Grover and dancer, model and actress Nora Fatehi.

‘Bharat’ is the seventh major Indian movie to be shot in Abu Dhabi, and the third this year alone. ‘Race 3’ was shot earlier in the year as well as, ‘Saaho’, which features Prabhas, which also filmed in the Emirate. Other major productions in Abu Dhabi this year include Paramount Pictures’ ‘Mission: Impossible – Fallout’, which saw Hollywood legend Tom Cruise leap from 20,000ft in the Emirate’s sky for the daredevil HALO parachute jump.

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