Your Guide to Ramadan 2019 TV Series

It’s That Time of Year Again

Cairo- At the start of 2019, many Egyptian TV stars started filming for their upcoming Ramadan shows. As the Holy Month is just around the corner, Al Majalla has compiled a rough guide to this year’s the most anticipated series. 
Sadly, a lot of prominent stars, such as Yehia El-Fakharany, Yousra, Laili Elwi, Mohammad Ramadan and Ghada Abdelrazek, will not appear in a show for this upcoming holy season.  
On the other hand, a number of other Egyptian actors will be appearing on the small screen. Among said actors are Ahmed El Sakka, Mostafa Shaaban, Amir Karara, Mai Ezzidine, Ghada Adel, Dina El Sherbiny, Ali Rabie, Mohammed Adel Emam and others.
Some actors, such as Yasmine Sabri, Reham Haggag and Bayoumi Fouad, will be playing protagonists in their shows, a milestone in each of their respective careers.  It should also be noted that most of this year’s series are comedies and have a focus on Upper Egyptian or “Sa’idi” themes.
Comedy isn’t the only thing we’ll be breaking our fasts to this year, as there will also be 35 drama shows on the menu. Some of said dramas have only just started filming, while others are ready for TV. 
First, I will talk about the delayed works, which include about five series. Among these series is the “Hot Line” (Khat Sakhen). This show was meant to be shown in Ramadan 2018 but was delayed as its creators failed to market it. One of the main characters in the series is played by Syrian actress Sulaf Fawakherji, who returned to the acting scene after an eight year of absence since her last show, “Cleopatra” in 2010. Hussien Fahmi, Nidal Shafei and Salah Abdullah will also play main characters in the show. Behind the scenes, Fawziah Hussein wrote the show, while Husni Saleh served as its director. The series focuses on the character, Alia, who is a doctor dedicated to helping patients who have attempted suicide. 
The second series that was supposed to air in 2018 but was postponed to 2019 is titled, “The Secret” (Al-Sir). The show stars Wafaa Amer, Hussein Fahmi, Reem al-Baroudi and Nidal Shafi'i.The series is one of the longer ones as it constitutes 60 episodes; the show also contains some social commentary focusing on human relations among people in Egyptian society. The series is written by Hossam Mustafa and directed by Mohammed Hamdi.
The third postponed series is titled “Al-Daher,” which stars Mohammed Fouad, who makes his return to the drama scene after his brief absence. Its screening was postponed due to a series of problems and creative differences between its creators, especially from the author, Tamer Abdel Moneim. But Fouad has recently announced that these differences have been resolved, and that the show is expected to be screened this year. It focuses on an officer who lives in the Daher area and provides aid for all the people living there. The series is directed by Yasser Zayed.
Actress/singer, Rubi, finished filming “This Is What Happened” (Aho Da Elli Sar) last year. The show was expected to be broadcast in 2018, but was postponed without giving prior notice. 
Its author is Abdulrahim Kama, while Hatem Ali was its director. The show’s actors include Mohammed Farraj, Ahmed Daoud, Sawsan Badr and Arwa Jawde. Its events take place between 1918 and 2018 and talks about women’s suffering in general, with a particular focus on the Sa’idi (Upper Egyptian) women’s struggles. The show also features the different ideas, customs, traditions and other social issues that concern women.
As for the series, "Baraka," by Amr Saad, it stopped filming before the beginning of last Ramadan due to poor production conditions. Nevertheless, it was recently reported that its filming is expected to be completed within the coming months in preparation for this Ramadan. It tells the story of Baraka, a man from Upper Egypt, al-Sa’id, who immigrates in Cairo with his mother and starts working and saving money. However, he soon falls into a number of dilemmas because of a number of people in power. It is directed by Mahmoud Karim and written by Mohammed al-Shawaf. Kamal Abu Raya and Hala Sedki also play starring roles. 
Among the dramas that are currently being filmed for this year is “Valentino” which stars veteran actor Adel Emam who has been appearing in shows for the past 7 Ramadan seasons.  The show is directed and produced by Ramy Emam and written by Ayman Bahgat Qamar. There will naturally be a lot of comedic situations in the show, as Adel Emam will be playing the main character, thus making it more of a dramedy than a pure drama.
Mervat Amin will also participate in this year’s Ramadan season as she is set to appear in “Qayed Aely” which is written by Mohammed Rajaa and Michel Nabil. The series is directed by Tamer Hamza and will include almost 25 stars, including Ezzat El Alaili, Salah Abdallah, Poussi, Mohamed Reyad, Simone as well as a large group of young artists. The show focuses on a prominent businesswoman, who faces many difficult situations and stress because of her family. Many of the show’s plotlines will focus on familial conflicts. 
Many of this Ramadan’s shows center on “Sa’idi” themes. For instance, superstar Ahmed El Sakka will once again play a Sa’idi character in the series titled, “Wild al-Ghaba”, written by Ayman Salama. The work sheds light on one of the social issues within Upper Egyptian society. It is directed by Mohammad Sami, and also stars Safaa El Toukhy, Mai Omar and Kamal Abu Raya. 
Maged El Masry will also appear in "Bahr", in which he will play the titular role of a Sa’idi man named Bahr. The 60-episodes series is written by Ahmed Abalfattah and directed by Ahmed Saleh. 
After a two year absence, Mohammed Adel Emam will appear in “Hogan”, a series written by Mohamed Salah el-Azab and directed by Sherine Adel. The story focuses on a young man obsessed with the famous wrestler, Hulk Hogan, and is thus nicknamed “Hogan” by his friends. Karim Mahmoud Abdel Aziz will also be playing a main character in the series. 
Yasser Galal will play a protagonist for the third year in a row as he is set to appear in “Lams Aktaf”. The series is written by Hani Serhan and directed by Hussein al-Minawi and will include other star actors such as Karam Jaber and Amina Khalil. 
After achieving success in 2018’s “Ayoub” series, Mustafa Shaaban will be sure to re-captivate his audience and fans as he will star in the series titled “Beit Radi.”   In the show he will play the role of a business man working in the Egyptian market. Mohammed Sayed Bashir is the writer of the series while Ahmed Saleh is its director. Shooting hasn’t been started yet as the rest of the staff has yet to be selected.  
Artist Hamada Hilal is also expected to return this year to the Egyptian drama scene and play a role in a series by Mahmoud Abu Zeid. The is the third time that Hilal and Abu Zeid will be working together, and Mohammed Bakir will be the show’s director. The show’s title has not been chosen yet. 
The young Syrian actor Bassil Khayyat is set to appear in another Egyptian show this Ramadan as he did the previous year. He recently signed on to a series which he has not given any details about. The actor was highly praised last year for his performance in "Journey" (Al-Rihla).
Nelly Karim will also play a role in an untitled series written by Amr El Daly and Ahmed Wael and directed by Ahmed Medh. The rest of the staff is currently being selected, and Karim stressed that the show will be teeming with funny scenes and exciting plotlines.  
Ghada Adel also returns this year to play a role in an untitled Egyptian drama after being absent for a while. Her last role was in the “Devil’s Angels” (Malaekat Iblis), which was written by Amin Radi and directed by Ahmed Khaled Moussa. Other actors set to appear in the show include Eman El-Asy and Salwa Khattab. The series is set in populated working class neighborhood.
Mai Ezzidine, another actress who has been absent recently, will also appear in a Ramadan drama as she is preparing for a series titled “Princess Bisa” (El Princisa Bisa). It is written by Mostafa Amr and Farouq Hahem and directed by Akram Farid, and the rest of the staff is currently being selected. 
Despite last Ramadan’s absence, actress Dina Samir Ghanem will be starring in a musical-comedy series written by Ayman Wattar and directed by Khaled El-Halfawy. The work is based on three stories under one title, which hasn’t been finalized yet by its makers. Mohammed Salaam, Mohammad Tharwat, Shaima Saif will serve as Ghanem’s co-stars. 
Donia’s sister, Amy, will be playing a leading role in another series. The details of the work are currently being finalized. 
For the second year in a row, actress Dina El Sherbiny will be playing a leading role in a drama as she exclusively signed with the MBC Network this year. The currently untitled series is being directed by Kamla Abu Zekri and written by Mariam Naoum. 
Many actors and actresses will have the chance to prove their full potential this year as they will be playing protagonists for the first time in their “Ramadan careers”. 
Yasmine Sabri, for example, signed a contract to play the starring role in the drama series “My Story” (Hikayati). Production is set to go underway as she recently met with author Mohammed Abdel Moati and director Ahmed Samir Farag. 
If drama doesn’t quite get your taste buds excited, then have no fear as there is no shortage of comedies this year. For the third year in a row, Akram Hosni will be playing a role in a Ramadan series, as he will appear in “What’s His Name” (Ismu Eh) which is written by Ayman Wattar and directed by Khaled El-Halfawy.
Comedian Ali Rabie has decided to star in a series entitled “Idea worth a Million Pounds,” (Fikra B Million Genaih) as he will be joined by Sahar El Sayegh and Karim Afifi. It is written by Ibrahim Mohsen and directed by Wael Ihsan.
Hesham Maged and Chico will star in a comedy series titled “The Game” (El Loaba) which is written by Mohammed Salah Khattab and Ahmed Saad.
Comedian Bayoumi Fouad will continue his work in comedy as he will appear in a show titled “Precious Step” (Khotwa Aziza). The series is directed by Adel Adib and written by Shadi Abu Shadi.