Muscat: A film starring Hollywood actress Kristen Stewart did not film horror scenes in Oman’s Bahla province in December, a government official told Gulf News on Sunday, denying local media reports.
The province, a Unesco World Heritage Site, was chosen by the crew of Stewart’s film, Personal Shopper, for its historical scenery, when they shot in the nation last month.
Residents of Bahla had complained after media reported that Stewart filmed a horror movie there. The Ministry of Information sent a monitor to the shooting site, to make sure that they adhere to the shooting regulations, Salim Al Mafarji, Shura Council Member representing Bahla, told Gulf News.
Al Mafarji held a meeting with Oman’s minister of information, Dr Abdulmunim Al Hasni, who confirmed Stewart filmed at the Bahla Historical Fort as well as 12km Bahla Wall, but filmed no horror scenes in the province.
Other filming locations included Nizwa and the capital Muscat, according to the Ministry of Information.
Stewart left the country in mid-December.
Personal Shopper, directed by French filmmaker Olivier Assayas, is a ghost story set in the fashion underworld; it is slated for release in 2016.
National Geographic last April included Bahla province in a report on the world’s most terrifying places.
Bahla, a desert oasis, ranked in fifth place because its palm groves and abandoned stone houses are reportedly home to jinn, or spirits.
Legends say that spirits inhabited the city and built the famous 12km wall of Bahla overnight, although the report neglected to mention the distinctive historical and cultural value of Bahla province.
Beyond her global hit Twilight, Stewart has chosen a wide range of films, from award-winning tearjerker Still Alice, indie favourites Into the Wild (2007), Adventureland (2009) and The Runaways (2010); and blockbusters (2012’s Snow White and the Huntsman). She is the first American actress to win France’s answer to the Oscar, the Cesar Award, for Best Supporting Actress in Clouds of Sils Maria.