Saudi Arabia Wants to ‘Expose’ Turkey’s Dirilis Ertugrul with Kingdoms of Fire

Begun, the cultural wars have.

Kingdoms of Fire

Looks like local Pakistani producers aren’t the only ones irked by the success of Diriliş: Ertuğrul. Even Saudi Arabia is trying to combat the influence of Turkish drama Dirilis Ertugrul with its own counter-narrative series Kingdoms of Fire.

The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is introducing its own alternatives for the globally acclaimed ‘Turkish Game of Thrones‘. The opening salvo against its war against Turkish cultural invasion is the big-budget period drama Kingdoms of Fire, which reportedly cost $40 million to make.

Besides splurging on the budget, KSA also brought in British director Peter Webber, known for ‘The Girl With the Pearl Earring‘ and ‘Hannibal Rising‘ to direct the series.

Saudi-owned MBC network, the Middle East’s most-watched TV channel, is airing the 14-episode period drama since last month.


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More about Kingdoms of Fire

Kingdoms of Fire wants to strip the positive image of the Ottoman Empire being an era of pan-Islamic unity. It is set in the 16th-century defeat of the Mamluk Sultanate that makes up modern-day Egypt and all the way east into parts of Saudi Arabia as the Ottoman Empire grew.


The protagonist from Kingdoms of Fire is Tuman Bay II, an Arab who led the Mamluks in Egypt against the Ottoman Sultan, Selim the Grim, in 1517.

With the objective clear, can Kingdoms of Fire succeed against Diriliş: Ertuğrul? Can this series extend influence beyond the Arab world, like Ertugrul did?

Based on what Netizens have to say, this doesn’t seem too really.



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Why the hate?

Reportedly, various Gulf and Arab nations have banned Diriliş: Ertuğrul.

The debate has reignited after observing the runaway success of Ertugrul Ghazi (the Urdu dubbed version by PTV), and the airing of Kingdoms of Fire during the same period.



The Turkish series already has a stronghold in South Asia due to the cultural similarities it shares. Plus, of course, the Urdu dubbed version is a hit with many.

Are you planning on watching Kingdoms of Fire to see what the fuss is about? Let us know in the comments below.

Written by Ummara Sheraz

Entertainment & culture writer at ProPakistani/Lens. Occasionally dabbles in other news.


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  1. KSA Is Making A Mistake By Spreading Hate Rather Than Love. Turkey Is Working For The Unity Of Muslims Brotherhood But KSA Just Want To Spread Hate And Separate The Muslims. At This Time We Need Unity, We Have One Religion , Islaam. KSA Will Never Succeed By This Hate Spreading Shows.

  2. What a shame, still proving muslims don’t need enemies from outside. They will again give loads of money to bloody Americans to make film instead of using for the betterment of muslim ummah.

  3. Will never understand one thing why on earth can’t muslims support each other. Why we always have to prove that we don’t need enemies from outside. Its pathetic.
    Muslims could have appreciated this effort.
    This is what exactly is shown in ertugrul. Very rightly.

  4. What ever are the wishes of Saudis ، It is now 1000٪ Sure and confirmed that Saudis has lost their credibility in terms of their New Approach towards Islam and World۔ They are more inclined towards West and Israel ۔ I don’t know what are reasons but People of Islamic world are now Looking towards Turkey ، who have shifted from their previous stance about Islam in Ataturk era۔
    So No impact will be made by the Drama of Saudis

  5. Any thing not done in good faith is bound to fail. Their intention is to divide Muslim Ummah, which will benefit only enemies of Islam. Not interested in watching this drama

  6. جس ڈرامے کے ٹریلر کا تھیم سانگ ہی انگلش میں ہے. تو اس سے اس ڈرامے کی کریڈیبیلیٹی کا اندازہ ہو گیا کہ اس ڈرامے کو کامیاب کروانے میں انگلش دماغ بھی کار فرما ہے.

  7. We all know this is another attempt by the pro Israeli saudi govt.. They took control over the Arabian peninsula by the help of the British, played a role in destroying ottoman caliphate..InshaaAllah kingdom of fire will be a flop and InshaaAllah it will turn the tables on them.

  8. Ksa has got some ego problem. Where Turkey is thinking about the unity of muslim ummah KSA is yet again dividing the ummah. Arab countries such as Ksa & uae keep proving they are the biggest enemies of muslim ummah when it comes to unity.

  9. artugral one of the best and beautiful islamic documentry and when you watching artugral then your heart become young and your heart want to fight for islam .
    love for jahad islam ..

  10. What the hell they think that the could achieve from this couterpart of Ertgul.
    The sudia’s government is puppit of America.So in order to please their keeper.
    They will fail in a humiliating way…..?

  11. Not interested in Kingdom of Fires one single bit. In sha Allah It will be a big flop!!!
    There is no drama on tv which can even compare to Ertugrul. Absolutely love it the best thing I have ever watched in my life.
    So addicted I have watched all 5 seasons twice!

  12. Saudis are enemy of all other muslims theay are not a real muslims always fighting and they gave “C” grade value to Pakistani but there all power over when Turkish ar there..

  13. Imagine how wonderful it would be if all the different countries, religions, races, cultures and groups would pay attention and live the most fundamental messages of the wise ones in the TV shows, which are the same as the fundamental messages of all the most wise ones throughout history in every land over the world: All is One in One God, all humans are of God and are equal, we are all ‘brothers’; hate and animosity is NOT the truth, hurting people because they believe or live differently is NOT the truth. It is the evil inside each one of us that we should be fighting first. In the Turkish shows, wise ones like Ibn Ul Arabi, Ishak, Yunus Emre, Tapduk Emre, etc, speak of this oneness and brotherhood/sisterhood, and they respect the core wisdom of all religions and traditions, which all arose from the same original harmonious source many, many thousands of years ago. Why do we insist on separating, fighting, hurting, and even warping the messages of our sacred books and prophets to suit our conflicted agendas? It is not the truth of God, for any of us. We are greater than this discord, we, Humanity, are amazing all together if only we would know this in our hearts and live it.

    • Great concluding remarks Dianne. It is wonderful show; very enjoyable. People should take it as entertainment.

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