Moroccan Film Industry – Morocco has a long film culture and history, and is home to one of the biggest film studios in the world attracting film producers internationally.
The first film was made in 1897 by the Lumiere brothers, called ‘Le chevalier Marocain’ or the Moraccan Knight, and since a long list of famous films have been made in in Essaouira, Casablanca and especially in Ouarzazate, the film capital of Morocco..
In 1949 Othello by Orson Wells has scenes filmed in the coastal city of Essaouria, then in 1958, Mohammed Ousfour made the first Moroccan movie, ‘Le fils maudit’ (‘The Damned Son’). Ten years later the first Mediterranean Film Festival was held in Tangier (now held in Tetouan) followed by the first National Festival of Cinema in Rabat, 1982.
Atlas Film Studios built in 1983 is the largest film studio in the world. It covers an area of around 322,000sq ft of desert, five miles outside of Ouarzazate on the road to Marrakesh. It is a popular tourist destination with old movie sets scattered across the desert.
Today, the Kingdom of Morocco offers the opportunity to produce lots of films, inspired by the country’s geography and professional film industry standards and facilities. Each year the International Film Festival of Marrakesh (FIFM) is held in December hosting top international titles.
Many famous films have been made in Morocco including ‘Lawrence of Arabia’, in 1962 through to ‘Gladiator’ starring Russel Crowe, 1990s, other well known movies filmed in Morocco include Black Hawk Down, Mummy Returns, Dune, and The Man who would be King.