28 May 2010

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SATC 2 Has Fans and Foes in Abu Dhabi

May, 26. 2010.

ABU DHABI - In this city, “Sex and the City 2″ may not be coming to a theater near you.

There’s little reason the conservative Persian Gulf emirate would want to promote the racy new comedy, though part of the script is set here.

Abu Dhabi, home to many American and European expatriates, refused a request to film there, say city officials. Instead, the producers of the movie shot in Morocco and called it Abu Dhabi in the film.

Officials here are cringing at the title alone, which associates “sex” with their city without showing its people, streets and buildings. Since the film wasn’t shot here, Abu Dhabi’s newer, prized icons–including a Formula One racetrack, and a nascent big-city skyline–don’t make a showing in the film. Some initial reviews have called the film “anti-Muslim” and “politically-incorrect.” USA Today’s Claudia Puig said the movie’s “lampooning of Arabs” was “troubling.”

“It’s misleading to the audience to use the name of Abu Dhabi when it’s filmed in Morocco,” says the U.A.E.’s National Media Council, a regulator and licensing body.

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