Richard Gere in Abu Dhabi!

11 Oct 2012

All the red carpet action from the starry opening night at the Abu Dhabi Film Festival right here with Ahlan!

It was a steamy and star-studded red carpet at Abu Dhabi Film Festival (ADFF) as international stars smiled for the cameras including the man who will always be an officer and a gentleman in our minds, Richard Gere.

Before Richard, whose movie Arbitrage opens ADFF, closed out the carpet craziness, Ray Haddad, the director of Being Sayed Rasoul, strutted down in black tie paired with converse sneaks and Syrian actor Jamal Soliman sported a pair of Tom Ford glasses.

Said Jamal to Ahlan!, "I've been shooting a new TV series where I play a very serious judge," noting that his vintage-looking glasses remind him of The Godfather. "I look like an Italian judge!" he joked before going to greet his fans.

Khaled Nabawy, who's at ADFF for his film The Citizen, dished about having dinner with Richard Gere in Cairo. "It was two years ago," he noted, adding, "Richard is a very good man, he has a great heart. Oh, and that dinner was before the revolution!"

South Indian star Mammootty also praised Richard, saying, "My favorite Richard Gere movie is An Officer and a Gentleman." Good choice!

A few photographers climbed up scaffolding to get better pictures of actress Menna Shalabi, but it was nothing compared to the chaos that ensued when Richard came out! Photographers were shouting at each other, handlers told security not to manhandle unruly photographers and the rest of us all just yelled, "Richard!!!"

Said Arbitrage's Saudi producer Mohammed Al Turki, who's only 26!, "Richard loves the Middle East and he was an absolute mentor to work with. He said he had never seen such young producers - we are all in our twenties - and he dealt with us like we were a much older age group."

After signing a copy of Ahlan! for our readers, Richard dished that he was super excited to be in Abu Dhabi but all he'd seen was the hotel. Considering he's staying at Emirates Palace, where the festival is being held, we don't feel that sorry for him. As for his favourite movie that he's filmed, he had trouble deciding, dishing, "I've filmed a lot of them!" But finally he caved and admitted, "But Chicago was the most fun." Did you hear that Catherine Zeta-Jones?