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Abu Dhabi Uneasy About its Role in New Movie

The new "Sex and the City" movie was set -- but not shot -- in Abu Dhabi. Now officials there are trying to decide whether or not to release the film to local audiences, as the city tries to control its brand and image.
May 18, 2010, 10am PDT | Nate Berg
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Worried that the film was too racy for the conservative Emirate, Abu Dhabi declined to allow filming in the city. But the film is still set in modern-day Abu Dhabi.

"The film exposes some of the complexities for Gulf cities trying to compete on the international stage. Abu Dhabi has aggressively marketed itself as an emerging hub for film studios and production companies. But there's a high sensitivity about plots perceived as too racy or politically charged about regional affairs.

The UAE's refusal to participate in the film reflects a desire to "control their brand," said Leila Hudson, graduate director of Near Eastern studies at the University of Arizona."

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Published on Monday, May 17, 2010 in Associated Press
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