“Mosul” star Adam Bessa talks about “historic” war drama in Arabic language

Through Corey atad.

23 Nov 2020 14:18

There has never been a war film like “Mosul” before.

Netflix’s new Arabic-language action drama, produced by the Russo Brothers and directed by Matthew Michael Carnahan, tells the story of an Iraqi SWAT team from the city of Mosul, who are fighting to free their city from the hold of the Islamic State.

Franco-Tunisian actor Adam Bessa spoke with ET Canada about his role in the film, its importance to Arab portrayal in Hollywood, and learning a whole new dialect for the role.

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When asked what it was like to star in a great action movie, Bessa replied that it was “Exciting. Exciting and physically demanding.

He said of preparing for the role: “We did three weeks of training camp. Super intense all day. We had a lunch break. And that’s it and then we come back to it.

Bessa, who previously starred in Russo-produced “Extraction,” also spoke about what attracted her to the film.

“The story itself, the fact that it’s the first time in Hollywood that there has been a whole Arabic cast in an Arabic language, which is historic. So to be a part of that is amazing, ”he said.

The film’s commitment to authenticity also required the actors to learn to speak the specific Arabic dialect of the city of Mosul, which Bessa compared to a Canadian learning to speak English in a dialect of Northern Ireland.

“The accent, certain words, the attitude. It’s far, very far from where I come from, ”he said. “So it’s the same language, I could understand maybe 60 percent. It was two weeks of coaching in dialect, more on the set. I mean, it was all day.

Bessa also laughed, saying he often annoyed fellow Baghdad-born co-star Suhail Dabbach by asking if his pronunciation was correct.

“I always asked him everyday, poor guy, I mean knocking on his door, ‘How do you pronounce that?’ He remembers. “He said, ‘It’s 2 in the morning, stop it.'”

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Another feature of the shoot was the international nature of the cast and crew.

“We had a little bit of English, we had a little bit of Romanian, I mean we had people everywhere,” Bessa said. “American, Canadian, we really had people from all over the place. So it was quite international.

Suhail Dabbach and Adam Bessa in “Mosul”. Photo: José Haro / Netflix

For Bessa, it was also important that the film spotlighted heroic Arab characters, which is not always so common in Hollywood films.

“To be able to be a hero in 2020 as an Arab is an extraordinary opportunity. He represents millions and billions of people. Sometimes your footage gets so messed up by people like ISIS, or what we hear in the news, but at the end of the day it’s just a little, little minority that messes up the whole picture, ”he said. declared.

“So to tell this story, and to tell the story of this man, from this article, a true story. They fought against the people and they fought to liberate their city without Americans, everyone left, ”he continued. “At the end of the day, it’s just a human story. And you just see the fact that we have more in common than we have differences, you know. “