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Last Updated: Monday, 19 May, 2003, 11:06 GMT 12:06 UK
Baywatch gets Egyptian treatment
Pamela Anderson
Baywatch made Pamela Anderson a household name
The largely conservative country of Egypt is to get its own version of Baywatch, complete with sun, sea and scantily-clad lifeguards.

Auditions are under way to find 10 actresses and five actors to play lifeguards in the show, Action in Hurghada.

Although Egypt is a largely Muslim country where many women wear veils, producer Yousef Mansour is searching for a cast to act in swimsuits.

Although only "inspired" by Baywatch, the series will centre around a group of lifeguards who are often called into action to rescue victims and crack crimes, with romance thrown in.

Yes, we will have beautiful girls and we will have beautiful guys
Yousef Mansour, producer
"I loved Baywatch and decided it was a good vehicle to promote many things in modern Egypt, to show beautiful beaches and the reefs - our underwater treasures," said Mr Mansour, who will also star in the show.

"And we will show beautiful girls. Yes, we will have beautiful girls and we will have beautiful guys."

Charming

Candidates from Lebanon and Syria have already put themselves forward for roles, hoping to emulate the success of Pamela Anderson who made her name as one of the "Baywatch babes".

"We are looking for good-looking people but it's not a beauty contest. They have to be charming, they have to be a certain height and they have to have a sportive attitude," Mr Mansour said.

David Hasselhoff
Hasselhoff recently appeared in the TV movie Baywatch: Hawaiian Wedding
Final casting will take place later in the year and Mr Mansour has invited Baywatch star and producer David Hasselhoff to the final selection process, but there is no word on whether he has accepted the invitation.

Mr Mansour does not anticipate any criticism from religious groups about the nature of the series, even though there will be shows of public affection - something not usually produced in Egypt, although there is a large satellite television market.

"I'm not portraying anything bad. This will be done with class and respect," he said.

Foreign view

"There won't be any sex - just tender kissing and people in love."

The script will use a mix of Arabic and English and there is a hope it will receive widespread distribution outside of Egypt.

Mr Mansour intends to change the commonly held vision of the Middle East.

"The foreign view is that there is nothing but war and killing in the Middle East. In the West, our image is of people driving camels," he said.


SEE ALSO:
Country Profile: Egypt
03 Mar 03  |  Country profiles
Hasselhoff: I hit rock bottom
30 Sep 02  |  Entertainment
Baywatch to bounce off screen
09 Feb 01  |  Entertainment
Baywatch to make 'movie debut'
21 Aug 01  |  Entertainment


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