Manju Warrier in 'Ayisha' shot in the UAE
Manju Warrier in 'Ayisha' shot in the UAE Image Credit: Instagram/ManjuWarrier

South Indian actress Manju Warrier spent 40 days in the UAE filming her upcoming movie ‘Ayisha’ and the cast and crew is now returning to India for their second schedule, Gulf News can reveal.

In an interview with Gulf News, the director of ‘Ayisha’ said they had shot extensively in Ras Al Khaimah and Fujairah for the last few weeks.

“90 per cent of our family drama has been shot in the UAE since the story is based here so we couldn’t have shot it anywhere else. And now we are done with our first schedule and will shoot the remaining portions in Mumbai and Kerala,” said Aamir Pallickal from the Dubai Airport.

‘Ayisha’ is an ambitious project starring a good mix of Malayali and Arab talents, Pallickal added.

“For the first time in the history of Malayalam cinema, we have a cast who’s 80 per cent non-Malayalis. We held auditions and I was personally choosing Arab actors … The language wasn’t much of a barrier and we communicated mostly in English,” said Pallickal.

‘Aisha’ isn’t the first film to be shot in this region. Malayalam blockbusters such as Fahadh Faasil’s ‘Diamond Necklace’ and Nivin Pauly’s ‘Jacobinte Swargarajyam’ were also shot in this region.

Jacobinte Swargarajyam
A still from 'Jacobinte Swargarajyam' Image Credit: IMdB

“‘My film has a connect to this region. And, I was determined to stay away from the clichéd depiction of life here … It’s going to be a realistic representation in ‘Aisha’ … Manju Warrier and the rest of the Arab actors have brought a lot of authenticity to this film,” said Pallickal. There is Malayalam and Arabic spoken generously throughout his feature. 'Ayisha' will release in multiple languages including Arabic and Malayalam. 

This director had earlier assisted ‘Sudani from Nigeria’ director Zakariya Mohammed and is now keen to make films that have an emotional connect.

“This is my dream project and it took me over three years to bring this family entertainer with a strong message to life … And I am hoping to release this film during Eid this year,” said Pallickal.