Layalina recently wrapped production on the pilot episode of its news magazine show Al-Sa’at (The Hour), a co-production with Dubai-based Al-Arabiya news channel. The series covers topics that impact the important relationship between the United States and the Arab world.
Layalina’s portion of the pilot was hosted by Ms. Deena Shakir, an Iraqi-American recent graduate of Harvard University. It was Executive Produced by Layalina’s President Ambassador Marc Ginsberg and Produced by Layalina’s Outreach Director Luke Stets.
Layalina produced two segments for the pilot episode. The first, entitled “Axis of Laughter,” features four famous Arab-American and Iranian-American comedians who dispel cultural stereotypes between the U.S. and the Middle East. The segment explores how these entertainers serve as citizen ambassadors and foster understanding between people of different backgrounds.
Layalina’s second segment entitled “Behind Closed Doors” discusses America’s future strategic direction in the Arab world with Ambassador Dennis Ross, President-Elect Barack Obama’s Chief Middle East Advisor.
Al-Arabiya’s two segments profile the progress made in the Israeli-Palestinian peace process since the Annapolis Conference of November 2007, and the growing popularity and impact of the Egyptian blogosphere in cyberspace.
Layalina’s production partner Al-Arabiya intends to air the completed pilot. Layalina’s portion of the pilot episode is made possible thanks to a generous $100,000 grant from the Marc and Eva Stern Foundation of California.