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My father, the great producer and screenwriter Mamdouh Al-Leithi – may God have mercy on him – was closely associated with the great artist Mahmoud El-Meligy since his childhood. He used to dream about him and keep watching his works so that time passes and he works with him dozens of works as a producer and their relationship turns into a close friendship, and the beginning of the end was the movie “Ayoub”, when My father – may God have mercy on him – assumed the position of a general observer of television films, designed to inspire a new spirit in the television film sector, so he sought the help of real talents, but he also knew that in order to compete, he had to attract and use the biggest stars as well.
Indeed, he was able to attract top stars to work in television films, as he did in the movie Ayoub, in which he combined the two giants, Mahmoud El-Meligy, the international artist Omar Sharif, the great artist Madiha Yousry, and a bouquet of senior stars, and although all those around my father ruled out the idea that Omar Sharif would agree to participate in the film Produced by television, especially since at that time he was receiving a large wage in his successful international films, but my father was blindly trusting his approval, and indeed he spoke to him and sent him the script, and Omar Sharif agreed and received a wage of 2500 pounds, and this was a very small amount for his wage In his work abroad, but Omar Sharif had another account, which is his love for Egypt and his first home on Egyptian television.
This film carried the last moments in the life of Professor Mahmoud El-Meligy. During the break when preparing one of the scenes, he was sitting next to the artist Omar Sharif, talking and laughing and talking to him about life and its strangeness. With him during a passing conversation, and when he continued to sleep, the artist Omar Sharif said to him, “What, Mahmoud?” But he did not answer him, as he performed the last scene in his life, leaving everyone in a state of astonishment. His death was like a great dramatic end for a giant artist who gave all his life to art.. At that time, they called my father, Mamdouh El-Leithi, to tell him that Professor Mahmoud El-Meligy was tired in the studio, so my father hurried down from his office to the place of filming. Upon his arrival, he found that he had met his Lord, so he carried him on his shoulder and transported his body in my father’s Mazda 323 car to his house in Zamalek.
My father did not want to shock her, so he told her that he was a little tired, to put him on his bed, and she did not know that he had died.. This situation remained engraved inside him, and whenever he heard the name of the artist and Professor Mahmoud El-Meligy, he remembered all this history and all the long journey that this artist made and he made. He has been with him since he was a small child, admiring him to a friend who carries the body of his friend.. May God have mercy on them and put them in peace.