Sensible Sound Bites

Posted on 09. Aug, 2012 by in News

By Mai Al Khatib

Article courtesy of Gulf Weekly » August 8 – 14, 2012 (Volume:10 / Issue 84)

Nutrition guru Alia Almoayed hopes a series of instant sound bites on TV and online will help reduce the bulging belts of Bahrain’s growing number of overweight adults and children.

She is focusing on sending a healthy Ramadan message with her unique lifestyle show which, if it attracts enough attention and following, will become a staple ingredient of regional channels.

In hard-hitting two-minute segments broadcast on Bahrain TV (btv) host Alia is tackling a range of health issues as well as promoting fitness and well being.

The show entitled Shrayha Alia? – which translates in English to What Does Alia Think? – currently delivers quick and easy to implement health tips to the busy every-day individual during the holy month.

The Arabic programme, subtitled in English, also touches upon a number of topics and questions asked during Ramadan including the benefits of fasting, exercise and sensible eating during iftar.

The 35-year-old mother-of-three, from Hamala, said: “I feel that health information is too confusing and too much of a hassle to acquire, especially in the fast-paced lifestyles we endure today.

“So, I wanted to deliver easy information to people and advise them what is ‘doable’. It saves people having to look up the information in books or online and saves them from getting confused by conflicting statements which are out there.

“This show gives the viewer exactly what they need to know, minus the fluff, in just under two minutes.

“It seems short, but it works! Each episode gives the information and the action needed to live a healthier lifestyle. It’s that simple.”

Alia came up with the idea of the show after noticing the short-attention spans that people have developed, which she believes is a result of the increased use of social media such as Facebook, Twitter and Blackberry Messenger.

She explained: “People no longer appear to have the patience or time to watch an hour-long educational programme.

“So, I pitched the idea to my producer Saleh Nass of Elements Productions and realised that he had the same idea and was just about to pitch it to me!

“We were both passionate about the topic and believed it could work. The aim was to get people in the region healthier as quickly as possible.

“We have started with a Ramadan series with the hope of continuing with health tips throughout the year.

“It is done in Arabic because I feel that’s where health information is mostly lacking. However, all episodes have English subtitles as well.

“I’ve poured all my Ramadan advice into the current episodes. The fasting experience becomes much more pleasant once people get the advice and implement it.”

Concerns over fasting during Ramadan has grown in recent years after studies revealed that some people put on weight by over-indulging during iftar on unsuitable fatty foods.

The show is being aired twice-a-day on BTV at 4.15pm and 8pm. It is also available online at www.shrayhaalia.com

Alia is now working on getting the programme picked up by a major network to continue throughout the year and to expand the discussion over a variety of health issues.

“We are currently looking for a TV network to adopt the show so that we can keep it going,” she said. “And, at the end of the day, our main objective is to deliver a healthy lifestyle message to as many people as possible.

“Not everyone can afford a private consultation with a nutritionist, but most people have TV and or internet access. This way we can also reach people from anywhere in the world.

“We are also going to expand the show to cover all health topics including weight loss, pregnancy, breastfeeding, parenting, beauty and much more.

“The biggest health hazard is being in denial that our health needs attention. People seem to turn a blind eye to their daily symptoms including headaches, fatigue, lethargy, skin problems and digestive discomfort, until it becomes a bigger health problem.

“Health is in the daily decisions that we make.”

Former GulfWeekly health columnist Alia is known for running a successful nutrition consultancy business, hosting TV and radio programmes, holding lectures and seminars and leading a number of weight loss projects.

She is also the author of I Want Healthy Kids, a book on how to raise children, The Dream Body Eating Plan, a weight loss guide, and I Want a Healthy Pregnancy, a book on how to enjoy natural pregnancy and childbirth.

She is also co-author of 101 Ways to Improve Your Health and hosts Dare to be Healthy, a weekly live internet radio show on www.AliaAlmoayedRadio.com

She also finds the time to run an active blog on www.AliaAlmoayedBlog.com

GFF Award for Huna London

Posted on 23. Apr, 2012 by in News

It’s been a busy couple of months for Elements on the film front – as we took part in the 5th Annual Gulf Film Festival in Dubai with 4 films: Mohammed Janahi’s Documentary “Goli Ya Helou”, Mohammed R. BuAli’s new film “Huna London” & “Under the Sky” & Saleh Nass’s “Game” – the latter two created under the supervision of world-renowned Director Abbas Kiarostami.

The week ended with Huna London receiving the 3rd prize at the Official Gulf Shorts Competition.

Huna London was produced entirely at Elements Cine Productions in association with Mohammed R. Buali and Dubai’s Enjaaz. Saleh Nass & Chaker Ben Yahmed acted as Executive Producers – and on a technical capacity served as Editor & Director of Photography on the picture respectively.

It was the first picture to be filmed in Bahrain using Silicon Imaging’s Si-2K camera (of Slumdog Millionaire fame) and a full 2K workflow was utilised throughout post-production.

Elements Cine Productions has plans to continue expanding production of films during 2012 & 2013 and is upgrading it’s facilities to match the 4K workflow currently required by digital cinema.

Huna London will next be screened at a major film festival at the end of the year – to be announced soon!

Click to View the Huna London Trailer

Chaker in Hollywood

Posted on 06. Mar, 2012 by in News

Producer & Co-Founder of Elements Cine Productions, Chaker Ben Yahmed is in Hollywood, Los Angeles where he has been taking part in the week-long REDucation programme.

Chaker’s experience as a Director of Photography both in the Gulf region & his homeland Tunisia for the past 10 years felt at home at the Red Studios where he was able to get his hands on the Red Epic, Scarlet & Red One.

“Being here at Red Studios in Hollywood has been such a refreshing experience for me” He said on a Skype call from LA “I was able to get intimate with the different cameras as well as getting familiar with the more fiddly aspects of a RAW workflow.”

In addition to plenty of filming time, Chaker was able to view his shot 4K footage and discuss best possible scenarios with instructors.

He added “It’s one thing working with the RED camera as we have in the past, it’s another having detailed knowledge of this powerful tool and preparing your self for the future of film.”

Elements is expecting shipment of it’s new RED scarlet over the coming weeks in a bid to bring 4K capabilities to the Kingdom. It’s post-production facility already hosts a full 2K workflow which will be upgraded to be able to handle 4K over the next few months.

“Goli Ya Helou” Documentary

Posted on 04. Mar, 2012 by in News

We’ve just completed work on “Goli Ya Helou” a 35 minute documentary directed by Mohammed Janahi.

Goli Ya Helou tells the story of Ali, who is the subject of a couple of young university student’s journey to find a subject for their research project. They find Ali in the local market. Ali earns a living by playing the flute to provide for his poverty-stricken family in a harsh material society. Ali also happens to have been born blind.

Elements executive produced this documentary for Mr. Janahi as well as handling principal photography & post-production. Goli Ya Helou utilised different cameras & formats and worked on an unpredictable schedule due to the sensitive nature of the subject. This made the post-production workflow challenging – as all the footage needed to be conformed prior to editing.

The film will start it’s festival run soon. A trailer can be found here.

Bahrain Summer Festival – Magazine Programme

Posted on 05. Jul, 2011 by in News

What an interesting and taxing time it has been for the Kingdom of Bahrain since the beginning of 2011. With the National Dialogue underway, our team has been busy as usual as the technical provider for MBC/AlArabiya in the Kingdom.

We’ve been commissioned to run a half hour programme by the Ministry Of Culture to document the fantastic events of the Bharain Summer Festival 2011! These will run on BTV across each day of the festival.

Challenging workflow, managing footage from multiple cameras & editing overnight for an early morning delivery.

Bahrain Summer Festival Programme 2011 is Directed by Chaker Ben Yahmed.

Elements Start Work on a Second Season of Chevrolet Supercars!

Posted on 01. Dec, 2010 by in News

For a second season in a row Elements have been tasked with the production of the (now WGA) Chevrolet Supecars ME Championship. The upcoming campaign will mark the fourth edition of the Chevrolet Motorsport-backed championship, and it promises to be the best one yet.The season will consist of six exciting rounds, to be held at four different tracks across the Gulf, including the series home track at Bahrain International Circuit in Sakhir, Yas Marina Circuit in Abu Dhabi, Reem International Circuit in Riyadh and Losail International Circuit in Doha.

Heading into the new campaign, the Chevrolet Supercars Middle East remains the region’s most popular and most highly regarded circuit racing series, and the only one sanctioned by the International Automobile Federation (FIA).

Elements Completes Work on “Ruffi’at Al-Jalsa” Documentary

Posted on 25. Nov, 2010 by in News

Elements has completed work on the documentary “Ruffiat Al-Jalsa” commissioned by Ms. Nasreen Faqihi & with backing from MEPI.

The Film was Directed by Bahraini Director Saleh Nass with cinematography by Chaker Ben Yahmed & Sound Design by the renowned Sami Al Gharbi. It waas edited by Samir Tantouch.

The film was cut-down significantly from an hour to 20 minutes to make it more digestable by viewers.

More Details from the GDN:

“A BAHRAINI volunteer is on a sole mission to promote through cinema the importance of a law protecting the rights of women and families.

The debut documentary, which is in Arabic with English subtitles, attempts to explain the plight of thousands of people suffering in silence due to the absence of a fully applicable Family Law.

It will be screened today at the Sheraton Hotel’s Les Plames Hall at 6.30pm.

The event is being held under the patronage of Information Centre for Women and Children (ICWC) and Children and Mothers’ Welfare Society president Shaikha Hind bint Salman Al Khalifa.

Nasreen Faqihi produced the film after the hardships she had witnessed as a volunteer in Batelco Care Centre for Family Domestic Violence.

The 25-year-old decided to make it her personal goal to make a film that tells true stories, which she says have been ignored by society for being taboo.

“True stories of court battles were a daily thing at the centre during the time I volunteered,” said the government employee.

“Our society is not familiar with these cases because it is considered wrong to talk about them and labelled as gossip.

“But I wanted this production to show real families talking about their struggles to raise awareness that the problem is there and the law is the only solution.”

Work on the documentary, entitled Court Dismissal, started two years ago before the Sunni part of the Family Law was approved by the National Assembly last May.

In the middle of shooting, the Sunni part of the law was approved, which meant the film needed to be edited in line with the new ratification.

It features real families who share their struggles, while their voices and images are altered to protect their identity.

The 20-minute production also features the participation of members of the judicial system, including two judges and two clerics, who approve of the law and its importance.

“In the movie, the judicial experts explain why the law is important and how it contributes to reducing cases and struggles in families,” said Ms Faqihi.

“Mean-while, the families reveal the suffering they had to put up with while fighting for their rights in courts.”

The main objective behind the film is to raise awareness on the importance of the law and its benefits to families, said Ms Faqihi.

It is the first project by Ms Faqihi, who holds a bachelor’s degree in International Studies.

“I was purely led by passion to work on producing this film,” she said.

“I knew that a movie would get across to Bahrainis better than a book or an article, as a picture is more vivid in explanation.”

Elements Production was hired to assist Ms Faqihi in her film, which was directed by Bahraini Saleh Nass and had the consultant help of care centre former president Dr Bana Bu Zaboon.

Efforts by women’s rights activists to create a family law that serves everyone came partially into effect when the Sunni part of the law was ratified by His Majesty King Hamad last July.

However, a similar version of the law for Shi’ite women was shelved based on reported opposition from religious leaders.”

Aswaq Article: الفيلم البحريني ـ التونسي «يومـك» يفوز في «أبوظبي السينمائي

Posted on 14. Nov, 2010 by in News

From an article in “Aswaq” arabic newspaper:

الفيلم البحريني ـ التونسي «يومـك» يفوز في «أبوظبي السينمائي
نزيهة سعيد

حاز الفيلم البحريني ـ التونسي «يومك» الذي أنتجته شركة الإنتاج البحرينية «إليمنتس» جائزة اللؤلؤة السوداء لأفضل فيلم سردي في مهرجان أبوظبي للأفلام وهو من إخراج شاكر بن يحمد، .

صُور الفيلم في مكان واحد، وهو من تمثيل زهرة أسيري وإحسان علي، ويجسدان فيه زوجين حديثين يواجهان الروتين اليومي بالملل والضجر، بالإضافة إلى الإحساس بالعبودية التي فرضتها طبيعة الحياة المدنية الجديدة، يحاول الممثلون في الفيلم أن يتعرفوا على ذواتهم عبر المرآة وحواسهم المنسية في رتم الحياة المكررة.
وقد لقي الفيلم اهتماما كبير في مهرجان أبوظبي السينمائي كونه فيلما باللهجة البحرينية ويمثل فيه شباب بحرينيون، ومن إنتاج شركة بحرينية.

وفي حديث لمخرج الفيلم والشريك الإداري في شركة «ألمنتس» شاكر بن يحمد عن وضع الإنتاج السينمائي في المنطقة قال: «وضع السينما والتلفزيون في البحرين والخليج وخصوصا للشباب لا يزال في أطواره الأولى، وبحاجة إلى المزيد من الدعم والتشجيع، فهناك الكثير من الطاقات الشابة في البحرين والمنطقة يعملون من دون دعم مادي ولو تواجد هذا الدعم فإن إبداعاتهم ستتطور بشكل أسرع وستنافس غيرها في المنطقة».

وبيّن بن يحمد أن المشاكل التي يواجهها المخرجون في الوطن العربي هي ذاتها من حيث عدم توافر الدعم المادي خصوصا للأفلام غير التجارية.
ويرى مخرج فيلم «يومك» أن السينما التجارية في الخليج والمنطقة تعيش أوضاعا جيدة، إلا أن تلك الأفلام التي تركز أكثر على الجوانب الفنية والتي يعمل فيها ممثلون ومخرجون ومؤلفون شباب فإنها لا تجذب المستثمرين الذي يفضلون الاستثمار في الأفلام التجارية، لذا فإن هذا القطاع ينمو بالدعم الحكومي فقط.

تم تصوير الفيلم في يوم واحد بإنتاج من شركة «ألمنتس» التي تأسست حسب الشريك الإداري للشركة صالح ناس لحاجة السوق البحريني إلى الفيديو الحديث.
تتعامل الشركة التي تأسست منذ حوالي عامين مع عملاء لها في البحرين وبريطانيا وبلدان أخرى، بالإضافة إلى سعيها لإنتاج أفلامها الخاصة، ومنها فيلم «يومك».
وبيّن ناس: «لدينا الكثير من الأفكار والقصص التي ألفناها وكتبناها من التجارب اليومية ونود أن نعكسها على أرض الواقع في أفلام قصيرة».

تضم شركة ألمنتس إلى جانب ناس وبن يحمد خبرات من بريطانيا، ليتوانيا، وتسعى الشركة لتدشين برنامج تدريبي للطلاب البحرينيين الراغبين في امتهان التصوير وإنتاج الأفلام.
وعن خططه المستقبلية قال بن يحمد: «يشارك فيلم «يومك» في مهرجان الأفلام القصيرة في هونغ كونغ في الوقت الحالي، ونستعد في الوقت الحالي لتصوير فيلم آخر من إنتاج شركة إلمنتس أيضا، في ديسمبر (كانون الأول) المقبل، مدته 15 دقيقة، يجسد خواطر صحافي عربي  وسيكون بالعربية الفصحى

http://www.aswaqnews.net/ArticleNews.aspx?Id=4154&IssueId=92

One More Day Recieves Black Pearl Award at ADFF

Posted on 10. Nov, 2010 by in News

Best Narrative Short – 2nd Prize: One More Day (Chaker Ben Yahmed, Tunisia/Bahrain)

From ADFF:

The Abu Dhabi Film Festival presented Black Pearl Awards for its two competition categories featuring short films: the internationally selected Shorts Competition, and the Emirates Competition, which is made up of short films from the UAE as well as the other GCC nations.

The awards ceremony was held at the Emirates Palace, and was presided over by Eissa Saif Rashed Al Mazrouei, Director of Special Projects for the Abu Dhabi Authority for Culture and Heritage, and Peter Scarlet, Executive Director of ADFF. Also in attendance were Ali Al-Jabri, Director of the Emirates Competition and Alice Kharoubi, ADFF Shorts Programmer.

It was a significant event for ADFF, as it was the first time the Emirates Competition has been a full part of the Festival’s competition. The Black Pearl Awards in the Shorts category are also an important touchstone for up-and-coming filmmakers.

Nouri Bouzid, President of the Emirates Competition Jury, and jurors Kasim Abid, Abdullah Hassan Ahmed, Ahmed Salmeen Al Ali and Haifaa Al Mansour presented the awards for the Emirates Competition. Bouzid, from Tunisia, is one of the most highly-regarded auteurs in the Arab world. Abid is an award-winning Iraqi filmmaker, while Al Mansour is one of the first Saudi women directors. Salmeen Al Ali and Hassan Ahmed are prominent among Emirati filmmakers.

Shirin Neshat, President of the Shorts Competition Jury, and jurors Suheir Hammad and Ali Mostafa unveiled the awards for the Shorts competition. Neshat is an internationally-exhibited visual artist and filmmaker. Hammad is an award-winning Arab-American poet and actor, while Mostafa is one of the most successful Emirati feature filmmakers.

The awards for the Emirates Script Competion were presented by jurors Ibrahim Almulla, Mohamed Hassan and Salah Karameh el-Amiri. Each of the three have been important writers in the developing cultural scene of the UAE.

“One More Day” makes it to Abu Dhabi

Posted on 08. Sep, 2010 by in News

One More Day or “Yowm’k”, Chaker Ben Yahmed’s directorial debut, makes it into the Emirates Competition of the Abu Dhabi Film Festival. It made it’s international debut at the Ourense International Film Festival and will be shown for the first time officially in the Middle East at ADFF.

It looks at the lives of a newly wed couple’s routine through their bathroom mirror.

One More Day was written and directed by Chaker Ben Yahmed. It’s edited by Saleh Nass with Sound  Design by Khalid Abou Zeid. It stars Zahra Assere & Ehsan Ali.

Abu Dhabi Film Fesitval runs from Oct 14th to the 23rd 2010.