2019 Winners & Shortlists



Write a short summary of what happens in the film.

Many Saudi women living outside of the Kingdom where experienced drivers, having been granted a driver’s license in surrounding countries. Nevertheless, the announcement of the royal decree was still a momentous occasion for all women of Saudi Arabia, whether living the Kingdom or not. The Drive Back films documents the story of Rawan Hamza, a local Saudi woman living in the UAE travelling back to visit her family, and driving, for her first time, and Saudi soil. For Rawan, this marked the first time she was legally permitted to drive in their home country. Through Rawan's story the goal was to empower women in Saudi Arabia and encourage them to take action, regardless of whatever negative sentiment that was infiltrating the mainstream media. The film needed to demonstrate beyond doubt to real Saudi women that INFINITI understood what the occasion meant to female drivers.

Cultural/Context information for the jury

Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030 strategy aims to repudiate both the nation’s dependence on oil and its support of religious fundamentalism. The first and most dramatic step was the Royal Decree announced on 26th September, which gave women the right to drive. Following the announcement, the majority of car brands flooded the market with tactical offers enticing the women of Saudi Arabia to make their first car purchase. However, INFINITI resisted the urge to engage in a tactical sales approach and instead launched a campaign that would connect with Saudi women on a deeper, more emotional level. Given Saudi Arabia is the most significant new car market in the region, and how in recent years sales and brand performance have been well under par, this was a massive opportunity for INFINITI. Our challenge was to empower Saudi female drivers giving them confidence and making them feel comfortable behind the wheel.

Tell the jury about the casting process.

Many Saudi women living abroad saw the need to learn to drive, even when it was not allowed in their country. When the ban was lifted, many already drove in UAE but the excitement of doing it for the first time in their country increased as it approached June 24th - the date on which women officially started driving in Saudi Arabia. We searched exhaustively for a woman who lived in UAE, knew how to drive and had a reason to return to her country driving alongside a male relative, as it was still not well seen that they were alone in the car. It was a long casting process; to find a real story of a woman willing to drive back home and be the first crossing the border, with all the anxiety and hesitation they had. Confidence was key for the final casting selection.


Name Company Role
Walid Kanaan TBWA\RAAD Chief Creative Officer
Manuel Bordé TBWA\RAAD Executive Creative Director
Fouad Abdel Malak TBWA\RAAD Executive Creative Director
Alberto Triana TBWA\RAAD Senior Copywriter
Federico Mariani TBWA\RAAD Senior Art Director
Ghassan Kassabji TBWA\RAAD Managing Director
Salah Bakri TBWA\RAAD Account Director
Rama Zarafili TBWA\RAAD Senior Account Manager
Aya Haidar TBWA\RAAD Account Executive
Rouba Asmar TBWA\RAAD Head of Production
Rozy el Beainy TBWA\RAAD Senior Agency Producer
Garrett Olexiuk TBWA\RAAD Senior Strategic Planner
Vishal Badiani TBWA\RAAD Senior Strategic Planner
Romy Abdelnour TBWA\RAAD Corporate Communications Director
Hazem Atieh / Ezzat Habra TBWA\RAAD Creative Services Managers
Karim Ghorayeb Sugar Rush Director Of Photography
Gloria Abu Diwan Sugar Rush Executive producer
Mohamad Saad Sugar Rush Executive Producer
Elias Daaboul Sugar Rush Camera Operator
Maria Malek Sugar Rush Editor
Lucid Lucid Colorist
Etyen Etyen Music
Chadi Roukoz Sugar Rush Sound mixer
Zeina Chamoun Sugar Rush Casting
Cherine Khoury Sugar Rush Director
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