Seidler is a British-American playwright who won the Best Original Screenplay Oscar for his work on The King’s Speech. Mustafa is a Norwegian-Kurdish filmmaker who’s known for helming the 2011 romantic drama, Red Heart, and the 2015 documentary,.
The upcoming feature – which Mustafa plans to direct – will focus on the relationship between Hussein and Namiq, who was suddenly selected by the ousted dictator to keep him safe. The politician was pursued by 150,000 U.S. soldiers, who took part in one of the biggest manhunts on the planet, which was accompanied by a $25 million bounty.
Namiq dug the tiny hole in which Hussein famously hid under his flowerbed near the town of Tikrit.
He publicly emerged from the hole, and was apprehended, in late 2003, three years before he was executed.
During the time they spent together, Namiq became the former president’s hairdresser, physician and bodyguard.
A friendship eventually grew between the two men.
Mustafa and Seidler have spent the last three years penning the narrative’s script. The helmer claimed his co-writer initially saw similarities between Hussein and Namiq and that of The King’s Speech. The 2010 Golden Globe-winning historical drama focuses on the relationship between the titular King George VI and his speech therapist.Lionel Logue.
With the release of the Hiding Saddam Hussein documentary, the filmmakers are now seeking financing for the narrative. Mustafa said they’re both adamant that the feature’s story will be told from the perspective of Namiq rather, than taking the usual Hollywood route. “I don’t want to make a movie about the CIA agent who gets the mission to find Saddam Hussein,” the director noted.
The Hiding Saddam Hussein documentary recently screened at the IDFA doc fest. It will have its Middle East premiere at the Red Sea International Film Festival in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia this Friday, Dec. 1.