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PHOTO CREDIT: Above photo by John Rickman Photography, San Jose, California.

Publicity Flyer for Badia Masabni's First Film in 1936:
Queen of Theaters

 

Translated By Priscilla Adum

 

 

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Maliket Al Masareh
(Queen of Theaters)

In 1935, Badia Masabni retired from nightclub performances because she planned to devote herself to film acting. She even placed an advertisement in the newspaper on September 10, 1935 announcing this retirement. Unfortunately, her first film was an utter failure, and it almost caused her to go bankrupt. Within a year, Badia returned to performing on the stage of her casino.

Publicity Flyer

Here is a rare publicity flyer for this first film which was called Maliket al-Masareh (The Queen of Theaters). This was also the nickname by which Badia Masabni herself was known. The top of the flyer has a line in French which says La Reine du Music Hall (Queen of the Music Hall). Next to that in Arabic it says Maliket El Masareh.

Click on the image to see more detail. The caption underneath the picture says:

Madame Badia Masabni, *El Asateza Moukhtar Osman, Fouad el Gazayirli, Beshara Wakim

In the film Maliket Al Masareh which was a big success at Cinema Diana and will continue to show for another week. Four performances daily at the normal price.

*El Azateza is the plural of El Oustaz, which means "Mr." in Arabic.

Plot Summary

The synopsis of the film's plot:

Badia's character (also named Badia) marries a very wealthy man. However, after only three days of being married, he abandons her, leaving her to fend for herself. Badia opens a theater, becoming famous and successful.

A man comes to see Badia. He informs her that her husband has died, leaving a will specifying that Badia inherits half of his money and this man inherits the other half. However, there is a condition: they must marry each other and remain faithful. The will specifies that if either one one of them cheats on the other, then the money will all go to the faithful spouse.

The two get married. The man, in a scheme to inherit the full amount of the money, tries all kinds of tricks to make it seem as though Badia has been unfaithful. Badia always discovers his plots. In the end, she winds up inheriting all the money.

Flyer for Queen of Theaters

 

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About the Translator

Priscilla is a dancer of Lebanese heritage who enjoys researching the Golden Era of Egyptian dance. She owns a collection of more than one hundred classic black and white Egyptian films which is continually expanding.

Priscilla has also gathered a large library of dance related articles and clippings from Middle Eastern magazines and newspapers, many of which she has translated from the original Arabic to both English and Spanish.

Priscilla currently resides in Central America where she is a dance instructor. 

Priscilla

 

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