Meshal Al JaserWRITER | ACTOR | DIRECTOR
Meshal Al Jaser is an award-winning director, as well as an actor and writer, from Saudi Arabia. He took the Arab world by storm starting when he was 17 years old, creating Arabic-language short films and posting them on his YouTube channel, Folaim Ya Gholaim.
In 2016, Al Jaser made his professional directorial debut with the short film Is Sumiyati Going to Hell? He also appears in the twenty-five-minute short, which Netflix subsequently included in its Six Windows in the Desert series of Saudi films in 2020.
Is Sumiyati Going to Hell? also earned Al Jaser the May 2017 Gold Movie Award for the best film that month, his first career award win.
Al Jaser also directed the short Arabian Alien (2020), starring Abu Swaleh and Saudi comedian Mohammed Alhamdan. The film focuses on Saad (played by Swaleh), a married Muslim man whose battle with depression takes an unexpected turn when he encounters an alien from outer space.
Arabian Alien was considered for an Oscar nomination in 2021 but did not receive one. However, the film received a nomination for Best Short Film at the 2020 Sundance Film Festival. Meanwhile, Arabian Alien also earned Al Jaser the Jury Award for Best Narrative Short at the 2020 Atlanta Film Festival.
Recognizing the importance of lifelong learning, Al Jaser enrolled at NYFA Los Angeles to further his filmmaking knowledge. He subsequently graduated with his BFA in Screenwriting in 2020.
Al Jaser will make his feature film debut later this year with NAGA (2023). This dramatic thriller stars Adwa Bader as Sarah, a young woman trapped in the Arabian desert, racing to return home before her curfew, lest she face her strict father’s severe punishment.
Notably, Al Jaser has been profiled in Screen Arabia and GQ Middle East. He won the 2021 GQ Middle East Man of the Year Award for Filmmaker of the Year.
Program Studied at NYFA: Screenwriting
Program Type: BFA
Year Attended/Graduated: 2020
Location: Los Angeles
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