In 2015, I began work for Arab TeleMedia Group, not knowing I was part of their plan to embezzle millions from their Qatari investors. ATP is a subsidiary of Arab Telemedia Group in Jordan. ATP was supposedly set up to manage production of a Qatari-funded and created 20-part TV sci-fi fantasy series called “Medinah” but this quickly turned into what is probably one of the biggest scams in film and TV history.
“Medinah” had a budget of about $50 million. Since local costs are approximately 1/6th of the UK, this meant the budget was equivalent to about $300 million (baring the use of international crew or resources). And yet, after many months of not shooting anything, ATP had spent more than half the show’s budget.
This blog is a point of view. My point of view. And every line in it is alleged even when it may – in the heat of the moment – say otherwise. Of course, there are those moments where something is plainly fact – threats of homelessness towards the crew, bullying, exit visas repeatedly withheld, and legal council for the international crew being knowingly illegally denied.
But there are also other facts. The crew not being paid. ATP crew being on the Medinah payroll despite working on other ATG projects, ATP constantly stalling on getting things done, countless examples of incompetence or deception masquerading as incompetence.
I worked for ATG/ATP in the hope they would eventually be fired, and that “Medinah” would survive them. I believe Medinah will survive them, but I was eventually fired for refusing to sign ATP’s latest contract – a contract that was designed to wholly serve the interests of ATP at the expense of the crew (the contract can be downloaded here).
Whether ATG was – and continues to be – guilty of embezzling “Medinah’s” funds is probably for the legal system to decide. Whether or not it is an evil company that treats employees like slaves, robs them, bullies them, and sees them as sub-human – that is for you to decide and maybe this blog will help you to do so.
FOOTNOTE – 1ST MAY 2017
It has become evident that despite my not being paid, Medinah Company LLC has used some of my designs in the pilot episode. Also, many of the designs are derived from my work. In the first instance, these designs remain my property. In the second instance, I own Chain of Title.
What does this mean? It means “Medinah” cannot be sold.
To do so would require that Ahmed Al Baker or a representative sign an agreement stating that they are not aware of any potential lawsuits, but they are aware as they have been warned by Chris Richmond – the previous designer – when he left, by myself, and various other crew members. They also keep track of this blog which has frequently mentioned this issue.
If Medinah is sold without my having been fully compensated, as well as any other crewmember that contributed creatively to the series, Medinah Company, the distributors and broadcasters will all face major lawsuits.
And if that happens, within the eyes of the international film and tv industry, Ahmed Al Baker and Medinah Company will have destroyed the Qatari film and tv industry that Sheikh Jasim had hoped to launch as flagship to positively promote Qatar internationally, before it has even begun.
And Ahmed Al Baker will not be able to blame that on Arab Telemedia Group.