Towards A More Liberal Country; Movie Theaters Are No Longer Banned In KSA

Since Mohammed Bin Salman was appointed as the Crown Prince on 21st July 2017, a series of progressive reforms have been witnessed in KSA starting from establishing entertainment authority that hosts comedy shows, concerts and pro-wrestling events till removing the ban on female drivers and letting women attend football games in stadiums.

women driving for the first time in KSA
Women driving for the first time in KSA.
Women attending a game at King Fahd International stadium
Women attending a game at King Fahd International Stadium.
Lebanese singer Hiba Tawaji's concert at the King Fahd Cultural Centre (AFP/Getty Images)
Lebanese singer Hiba Tawaji’s concert at the King Fahd Cultural Centre (AFP/Getty Images)

Aiming to project the country as more liberal and tourist-friendly, Mohammed Bin Salman has recently lifted the ban on movie theatres after 35 years. The resolution was announced on 11 December 2017 allowing providing licenses to commercial movie theatres.

The licensing process for cinema operators would start within 90 days and the first cinemas are expected to open in March 2018 with all the films scheduled to be screened subjected to censorship according to the media policy standards of the Kingdom. Although it may lead to much shorter versions of commercial films but this is still a move forward.

However, the resolution was perceived as “too liberal” by many Saudi Arabians, some even said it was prohibited in religion.

 

 

While others encouraged it.

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