Global creative leaders unite to tell a story of cross cultural friendship and compassion

Global creative leaders unite to tell a story of cross cultural friendship and compassion

Jun. 13, 2019

ApsaraPearl Group has partnered with RAPP MEA for a film about the importance of compassion and connection, told through the story of two independent girls whose friendship crosses faith and cultural divides.

At a time when brands are stepping up to promote important issues, ApsaraPearl Group’s ‘Shirley and Fatima’ shows that wherever we come from, we are stronger together.

Directed by British director, Samir Mallal, with Piers McGrail (BAFTA winning, IFTA nominated) as the Director Of Photography, the film was produced by Hanzo Films with London-based Assembly Rooms (who recently won the D&AD Awards for Best editing for John Lewis’ Elton John Christmas campaign). Company 3 (Marvel, John Wick and Godzilla) worked on editing and colour.

Ali Shabaz, Chief Creative Officer RAPP MEA, states:

“As a shared leadership team, we felt extremely passionate about making a piece of content for the world that shows a story of humanity, of connection and of friendship. The film, ‘Fatima and Shirley’ explores themes of empathy and tolerance, the central tenets of Ramadan, from the point of view of two young friends, who despite their backgrounds, find common ground every day.”


Chris O’Donohue, Group  Founder, ApsaraPearl Group, says:

Together with RAPP we created this story of connection & empathy. It’s a reminder as we live & work worldwide today, to understand the nuances of the communities we find ourselves in allows us to connect, demonstrate compassion & create lifelong friends. What could be better?”


Samir Mallal says:

We wanted to tell a truly global story with nuanced and authentic performances by two wonderful young actors who bring every moment to life beautifully.”


Mimi Nicklin, RAPP, Managing Director, MEA closed:

“We were thrilled to have found a team of this level all willing to collaborate to bring this to life. As a mother myself, I can say with surety, it is so often our daughters that can truly show us the most powerful lessons in empathy and tolerance

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