Abbout Productions is one of the most established production house working in Lebanon today. For their latest project, they have produced “One of These Days” with Lebanese director and writer Nadim Tabet. The film was screened at Cannes as part of the Film Market.

What’s the topic of your film?

Beirut, on an autumn day. The city is on the edge of chaos, but for Maya, Tarek, Yasmina and Rami, aged between 17 and 22 years old, it is just an ordinary day during which they question themselves about sex, love, and nighttime hangouts.
The film unites up-and-coming actors, most of them making their screen debut on the Lebanese and international film scene.

Manal Issa, who portrays the role of Maya, an impatient teenager longing for her first sexual experience, is a 23 year old French-Lebanese actress who landed her first major role in Danielle Arbid’s “Peur de Rien”. The film was just released in theaters across France while Issa prepares for her next role in Bertrand Bonello’s upcoming feature. Yumna Marwan, who portrays the role of Yasmina, a young woman on the run from a stint in rehab for heroin addiction and trying to escape the city, is a local rising star. After revealing her talents in Ghassan Salhab’s “The Valley”, Yumna went on to co-star in countless feature and short films. Julien Farhat, who portrays the role of Micho, a Syrian dealer, is also a renowned Lebanese actor, most notably featured in Nadine Labaki’s «Et Maintenant On Va Où?”

“One of These Days” deals with the passage to adolescence in a chaotic Lebanon. The director’s personal interest in Lebanese youth lies within the difference between the Lebanon he remembers from his own adolescence and the Lebanon of today. He was born during the civil war and spent his teenage years in a country on the brink of reconstruction where its consumer society had not fully manifested. Today’s youth doesn’t know the war and wasn’t faced with the same overwhelming challenges as previous generations that were crushed by the weight of their past. What is most striking is the evident contrast between their youthful longing for life and the omnipresence of death around them.
This very relationship between the framework of youth and that of the country’s reality is what drives the narrative and direction of the film. This ordinary day in which our four adolescents experiment with love and seduction will eventually become a turning point, slowly reducing the fabric of their careless existence.

This was your first time working with Nadim Tabet. How was the experience?

This is Abbout Productions’ first collaboration with director Nadim Tabet who already has several short films to his name. The goal this time around is to showcase a side of Lebanon rarely seen in Lebanese films, be it through its chosen themes or the way with which the characters are portrayed.

How did you finance it?

The film was largely financed through private investments and with the help of the Doha Film Institute. We are currently in post-production and hoping the project is able to attract solid partners who would either contribute to its funding in order to finish the remaining work or play a major part in the film’s life after it’s finished.

How did you get the opportunity to show at Cannes and what are you hoping to gain from it?

Due to the support of the Fondation Liban Cinema, our work in progress (which is 22 minutes long) was selected for screening at Le Marché du Film as part of the Lebanon Goes To Cannes initiative. The opportunity for exposure at Cannes will allow us to attract a sales agent, potential distributors, opportunities for financing and festivals that would be interested in showing the film once it’s completed.

by Hugo Goodridge