Today, as we know, marks the end of Ramadan and the beginning of Eid; a celebration that’s observed by 1.8 billion people (Muslims) around the world. It’s a tradition among Muslims to try and visit Mecca during Ramadan and Eid – for prayers to observe the two religious celebrations as well as for Umrah (the year-round pilgrimage).
But this year, as is common knowledge in this region, due to the situation and the health crisis owing to COVID-19, Mecca is under absolute lockdown, even during Ramadan and Eid. Even people living in Saudi Arabia cannot travel to Mecca. This has never happened in our lifetime. With these lockdowns and travel restrictions prevalent in Saudi Arabia, Ramadan 2020 and Eid 2020 are uniquely challenging, on a spiritual level, for those who follow the faith.
So, on the occasion of Eid, for Al Mosafer, a travel platform from Saudi Arabia, we decided that if people can’t travel to Mecca, their stories of Mecca can. Memories of Mecca are brought to people, in a film made by people themselves, titled ‘Stories of Mecca’.
On the production front, given that the film couldn’t be shot due to lockdowns in Mecca, a campaign on social media launched during Ramadan invited people everywhere to share their memories of Mecca. People from 52 countries contributed. Over 20 hours of stories were sifted through and then, those stories were put together in a film that’s told through people’s social media stories about Mecca. Because even though Mecca may be locked down, its stories will go on.
Within 8 hours of going live, the film has garnered over 500,000 completely organic cross-platform views and is at a 100% positive sentiment score.
Brand: Al Mosafer
Production Company: Dejavu
Executive Producer: Manasvi Gosalia
Director: Tahaab Rais
DOP, Cinematography, Editor, Grading and Colourist: Ayas Hassan
Grading and Colourist: Ashraf Muhammadunny
Creative Agency: FP7 Riyadh
Managing Director: Marc Lawandos
Executive Creative Director: Dany Azzi
Creative Director, Writer, Art Directpr: Tahaab Rais
Head of Copywriting: Hosam Mbarak
Art Director: Ounsy Nassar
Regional Head of Strategy: Tahaab Rais