Alumna Haya AlGhanim '20 Participates In Rawi Screenwriters Lab 2020

BY Felix van Kann, September 11, 2020

Haya B. AlGhanim '20

Recent alumna Haya B. AlGhanim '20 and her screenplay Road 250 have been selected to participate in the Rawi Screenwriters Lab in Jordan this year. She is one of eight filmmakers to participate in the 16th round of the lab which will take place between November 29 and December 6, 2020 at Feynan Ecolodge located in Wadi Feynan in the south of Jordan. 


The Rawi Screenwriters Lab is an annual five-day screenplay development workshop aimed at independent Arab screenwriters working on their first or second narrative feature screenplays. AlGhanim will get the chance to work with fellows and advisors on her script. Each fellow will have several one-on-one story sessions with the lab's creative advisors as well as in-depth dialogue about the craft of screenwriting and rewriting process, as well as the fellows’ individual visions for their stories. Over the past 15 years, the lab has supported 114 emerging screenwriters, with a number of Rawi’s Alumni successfully completing their films, which have toured regional and international film festivals receiving many awards.


Road 250 tells the story of Dima Hassan, a sheltered yet clever teenager, who has lived most of her life abroad. In an effort to prepare Dima for the future, Dima’s overbearing mother moves them back to Kuwait. She warns Dima that the rules are different in their homeland, the first being that she’s going to start at an all-girls school. Dima is equally as intrigued by the dynamics among the girls as the girls are with her. The ruthless leader of a wild group, Aisha, invites Dima to spend the weekend with them at a beach house. Learning about the tight-knit society she supposedly belongs to over the weekend, Dima struggles to figure out where she stands between what she’s taught to value and what she truly values and that when relationships are built off secrets, information can be ammunition, and reputations can be worth more than lives.


Haya B. AlGhanim is a screenwriter, director, and producer based between New York City and Kuwait City. Through her artistic and professional practice, AlGhanim aims to preserve and represent modern Arab art and culture. Her short films have screened at various international film festivals and other exhibition venues. Her short narrative, Same, Old. premiered at HBO’s Urbanworld Film Festival in New York and is currently traveling to other cities. Her short documentary, By the Medina, For the Medina won in the Best Documentary Short category at the first Kuwait Film Festival and was nominated for the Arab Film Awards presented by the Arab Film Institute. She is currently in post-production on her thesis film, the documentary short An Evening with Laila.