Osamah Sami in Ali’s Wedding
Based on a true story, Ali is an Iraqi-Australian who is caught between going ahead with an arranged marriage or following his heart.
- English title: Ali’s Wedding
- Director: Jeffrey Walker
- Cast: Osamah Sami, Helana Sawires, Don Hany, Robert Rabiah
- Language: English/Arabic
- Genre: Romance, comedy, biography
- Release date: 31 August 2017
- Running Time: 100 minutes
Did You Know…
- It’s Australia’s first Muslim rom-com movie.
- Ali’s Wedding is Director Jeffrey Walker’s first feature film debut.
- It was filmed by Oscar-nominated cinematographer Donald McAlpine.
- Based on a true story of award-winning Iraqi-Australian actor, writer and stand up comedian, Osamah Sami.
- Ali’s Wedding won Best Feature Audience Award at the Sydney Film Festival.
- The film had its world premiere at the Adelaide Film Festival in October 2016.
… and lastly, my thoughts…
Ok, I have a confession to make. Before arriving at Victorian College of the Arts for an exclusive preview screening of Ali’s Wedding, organized by The Faculty of the Victorian College of the Arts and Melbourne Conservatorium of Music, I wasn’t quite sure I would enjoy the movie. I had my doubts. The reason is I’ve watched other Australian-Arabic movies and wasn’t quite – you could say – content. Reasons of me being bilingual and of Arabic background, I felt the the roots of the characters weren’t portrayed accurately .
Ali’s Wedding not only picked up the interest of international audience but also won the Best Feature Audience Award at the Sydney Film Festival.
It was inspired by the true story of Osamah Sami, who plays the main character, and is based on his award-winning memoir Good Muslim Boy.
(From left to right) Osamah Sami and Helana Sawires
Playing a somewhat fictionalised version of himself, Sami took the role of Ali, an Iraqi-Australian and son of a Muslim cleric. He is caught between going ahead with an arranged marriage or following his heart for the first time.
It’s an affectionate and light-hearted story that explores the lives of the communities in Melbourne and all the outrageous events of Ali’s life, which involves his struggling identity, lying about scoring highly on his medical degree entrance exams and falling in love with Diane, a smart Lebanese girl from his mosque and who also attends The University of Melbourne to be a doctor.
Sami doesn’t sail to show the welcoming and humorous side of his Islamic community in the multi-cultural Australia.
With Osamah Sami’s co-writing style, Jeffrey Walker’s award-winning directing skills, and Donald McAlpine’s Oscar-nominated cinematographer technique, Australia’s first Muslim Rom-Com resulted in a warm-hearted comedy that is bound to win audience’s heart.
The co-writer and star, Osamah Sami, Andrew Knight (co-writer) and Tony Ayres (executive producer) passed by for a live, insightful Q&A with the international audience after the screening, discussing the film at VCA.
The cast during Q&A at VCA UniMelb (Image taken by me)
This movie is worth watching! This is the first Australian-Arabic movie I actually enjoyed watching. Go watch it and let me know what you think in the below comments section.
Note: All above images are screenshots of the movie trailer.