Former OSN & Warner Bros. Discovery execs launch MENA banner Rise Studios

Emad Morcos

Former OSN execs Emad Morcos and Amel Farag have teamed with Warner Bros. Discovery alum Amanda Turnbull to launch Dubai-based Rise Studios.

Amanda Turnbull

Morcos, former chief content and commercial officer at Middle East broadcaster OSN will act as chairman, alongside Farag, OSN’s former head of content commercial strategy as non-executive director and Turnbull, ex-GM at Warner Bros. Discovery Middle East, Africa and Turkey, who will serve as CEO.

Rise Studios aims to drive investment into content and talent in the Middle East and North Africa to create local productions for regional and global platforms. It is backed by Great Mountain Partners, a global in the media and entertainment sector, which has previously in Concord, Confluential Films, AiMi and A24.

The outfit has already secured five production partners at launch, including Egyptian scripted firm Partner Pro; advertising creative house ASAP, headed by film director Sherif Arafa and Amin El Masri; Lebanese and UAE based factual reality specialist Different Productions, headed by Mazen Laham; Watan Network headed by Bassel Khair; and Black Typhoon, headed by Omar Hussein, which is funded for the specific development of original content in Saudi Arabia.

Amel Farag

Partner Pro produced the regional hit Finding Ola and is in pre-production for a second season of the show for Netflix. Different Productions is set to launch Dubai Bling on Netflix on 27 October having already launched Chopped with DubaiTV and Say Yes to the Dress with Discovery and Starzplay Arabia.

“We believe that stories can be told differently and champion rich regional narratives that resonate locally and travel globally, leaving lasting impressions.

“Through collective commercial expertise and data intelligence, we pinpoint the right content for the right platforms, while discovering, supporting, and giving regional talent the recognition that it deserves,” said Morcos.

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