May 25, 2010, - 2:14 pm
Over a month ago, I posted the newest trailer for the “Sex and the City 2” movie, and complained that the trailer made it look like Abu Dhabi and the rest of the United Arab Emirates are some sort of decadent Western sexual playground, when just before that a couple was sentenced to 30 days in jail for kissing in public in Dubai.
The Atlantic (formerly known as Atlantic Monthly) quoted me with approval, noting as I had that the movie wasn’t even allowed to be filmed in Abu Dhabi and seemed like pan-Islamic propaganda for Gulf State tourism:
Sarah Jessica Parker [DS: or as we call her here at DebbieSchlussel.com, Sarah Jess-Equine Parker] had a vision. The plot of her new film, Sex and the City 2, would be set in the emirate of Dubai. The sultry resort city would be the perfect getaway destination for the franchise’s Manhattan-dwelling characters. Unfortunately for Parker, who executive-produced and starred in the film, Dubai wasn’t as welcoming as she thought it would be.
According the films [sic] producers, they worked for half a year trying to gain shooting permits in Dubai but were denied because the film’s title had the word “sex” in it. One producer told ABC News, “Half the story was originally set around Dubai,” he said. “Ski Dubai was in, the Dubai Creek was in … it was all about Dubai. They wanted the girls to be in a rich, modern Arab city.”
So instead the producers moved the film to Abu Dhabi but Dubai officials “urged Abu Dhabi to decline,” said a filmmaker. They stuck out again. The film would eventually be shot in Morocco despite the plot’s claim that they’re in Abu Dhabi.
Should Parker have known the emirates were going to be such a headache? Debbie Schlussel a film and political commentator thinks so:
It’s ironic that just after two Westerners lost their appeal of a conviction for kissing in public in the United Arab Emirates (UAE)–and have been sentenced to 30 days in jail, the new “Sex and the City 2” trailer… promotes the Emirates as a Western sex paradise and playground…And I just love how the movie shows star Sarah Jess-equine Parker finding her past love in the middle of the Arab Muslim desert. Because, hey, that always happens, right? Can’t find your long lost love from Jefferson High School . . . try looking in the Arab souk (market) on the streets of Abu Dhabi and the sands of its deserts.
Last night, I screened the movie, but can’t say what I thought of it until later, this week, when the movie debuts. It wasn’t necessarily completely as I had predicted. I have a lot to say, so stay tuned for my review.
Tags: Abu Dhabi, Atlantic, Dubai, Propaganda, Sarah Jess-equine Parker, Sarah Jessica Parker, Sex & the City, Sex and the City, Sex and the City 2, Sex and the City 2 Movie, The Atlantic, trailer, UAE, United Arab Emirates