Posted on March 21st on the YouTube, “Alephia 2053”, is the first animated thriller in Arabic. Created by the Lebanese production company Spring Communications, the film is available free, with the option of English subtitles, and has already accrued over 8 million views.
“A futurist vision for the generations to come”
Claiming to be apolitical, the Lebanese creators Rabih Sweidan and Jorj Abou Mhaya plunge us into a future “not so distant, of a dictatorship in an Arab country.” A message of hope with the choice of “grayish and bluish hues because the Arab world lost its soul a long time ago, extracted like a tooth,” Sweidan says.
“Alephia 2053 is about three characters whose stories come together to free a people from the yoke of the most authoritarian and highly-developed regime in history. To achieve a cyber-attack against the ultra-secure surveillance systems they need to play the essential card of solidarity.”
Diving into the world of Alephia2053
To access alephia.xyz, a site specially created to promote the film, a “secret code” must be found. Then we dive into the universe of this fictional country, where everything has been thought of. From the flag, through a detailed presentation of the country’s demography (40% “Levantians”, 25% “Orontians”, 15% Arabs, 10% Touriens” and 10% Other) to an excerpt from Alephia’s national anthem. There is even a timeline to show the country’s significant historical events.
Production and creative ideas are 100% Lebanese: “Unlike other big budget animation projects in the Middle East, Alephia 2053 relies on local talent. The character design, visual identity, and the graphics of the animation were all done by Lebanese.”
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