top of page


Writer, Director, Filmmaker

Abdullah Abu-Mahfouz.jpeg

Inspiring Healing and Transformation Through Cinematic Storytelling

As an independent Muslim American film director and writer, Abdullah Abu-Mahfouz is devoted to using the power of cinema to heal and unite diverse cultures. Drawing inspiration from Moustapha Akkad's groundbreaking film, The Message, Abdullah's filmmaking journey has led him to create meaningful stories that blend Eastern and Western perspectives.


A graduate of Full Sail University, Abdullah's multifaceted career spans documentaries for Al Jazeera America, feature-length films like Stand Up and The Pursuit of Refuge, and various short films under his startup studio, Reel Nation Media. As a seasoned freelancer, Abdullah has collaborated with industry-leading film and TV companies such as Gordon Ramsay, Robert Irvine, M. Night Shyamalan, Facebook, Discovery Channel, HGTV, and Netflix. Additionally, he has directed various projects for clients, including Zaytuna College and Princeton University.

Abdullah's passion for storytelling and commitment to making a difference are evident in his recent work as a Video Director at Commonwealth Charter Academy, where he directed and developed original educational content for nationwide distribution.

Currently, Abdullah is independently producing his latest film, Sally's Iron Mustangs, which is set to premiere in Fall of 2023. This feature-length documentary follows the inspiring journey of 64-year-old bodybuilder Sally Winchell as she builds strength and nutrition programs for seniors in Lancaster, PA. By sharing Sally's story, Abdullah encourages audiences to find their inner strength and rise to life's challenges. His work consistently reflects his dedication to fostering empathy, understanding, and healing through film.


  • White LinkedIn Icon
  • White Instagram Icon
  • Facebook - White Circle




The Back to School Club

(Branded Film, 2022)

Writer - Director - Cinematographer - Editor

The Back to School Club is Abdullah Abu-Mahfouz's first branded film, created to celebrate the Commonwealth Charter Academy's (CCA) 20th anniversary. Working closely with CCA's CEO, Abdullah developed a concept that showcased the company's values while incorporating staff as cast members. This project demonstrates Abdullah's ability to collaborate effectively with clients, creating high-quality films by leveraging the resources and talent available within the organization. As a director, mastering branded content and forming productive client partnerships are essential skills. They illustrate adaptability, resourcefulness, and balancing a creative vision with a brand's identity.

Pure Water Technology

(Commercial, 2023)

Producer, Director

Abdullah's commitment to partnering with brands that promote ethical values and products to their customers is showcased in the Pure Water Technology (PWT) advertising campaign. He collaborated closely with the marketing team to accurately portray the brand's values and crafted a captivating narrative. This involved pitching concepts, creating storyboards and treatment books, and conducting a thorough post-production review. Thanks to Abdullah's leadership in producing and directing, the project successfully achieved the client's conversion goals and opened doors for future collaborations and growth.

Princeton Football

(Sports Video, 2019)

Cinematographer - Editor

Showcasing Abdullah's impressive ability to deliver cinematic results in record time, this high-energy highlight reel captures the excitement and intensity of the rivalry football game between Princeton and Harvard. As both the director and editor, Abdullah expertly navigated the fast-paced environment of the sports field, utilizing his background as an athlete to keep up with the action and operate cameras with agility. This project demonstrates his technical prowess and his ability to thrive under pressure, creating a captivating sports video published within hours after the game.

The Pursuit of Refuge

(Documentary, 2019)

Producer - Writer - Director -Cinematographer -  Editor

In this intimate documentary, Abdullah follows the journey of Syrian refugees adapting to life in the United States. By capturing their unique experiences and challenges, The Pursuit of Refuge highlights the importance of empathy and understanding in today's diverse world.

Hot Fizz

(Short Film, 2018)

Producer - Director - Writer - Editor

Hot Fizz represents Abdullah Abu-Mahfouz's re-entry into narrative filmmaking after a series of documentaries. This short film was produced on behalf of Vidjam, a Central PA filmmaker's non-profit, for submission to the Lacie competition. Abdullah directed the film, secured funding, and recruited volunteers, fostering community involvement in filmmaking. Experimenting with humor while preserving the director's core intentions, Hot Fizz is based on an outlandish historical event and delves into themes of fanaticism and standing up for oneself in the workplace. Showcased at the 2018 Lancaster International Film Festival, Hot Fizz highlights Abdullah's adaptability and ingenuity as a filmmaker.

Potential For Anyone

(Commercial, 2022)

Writer - Director - Cinematographer - Editor

Potential For Anyone is a 60-second visual commercial for The Factory, a martial arts gym in Dillsburg, PA. This visually-driven narrative encapsulates the gym's core values: fostering character, sportsmanship, and enthusiasm on the journey to success. With 5 years of experience as a camera operator and director for FloSport's live grappling events under his belt, Abdullah has developed a passion for the sport, even competing himself. This project showcases his dedication to working on subjects he truly cares about and his commitment to inspiring transformation through storytelling. By focusing on topics that align with his mission statement, Abdullah continues to create conscious media art that resonates with audiences and reflects his values as a filmmaker.

CCA Ecology Video Series

(EDU Documentary, 2022)

Writer - Director - Cinematographer - Editor

The CCA Ecology Video Series is a collection of three documentaries directed by Abdullah Abu-Mahfouz, exploring ecological concepts at the Carbon County Environmental Education Center (CCEEC). This project allowed Abdullah to fulfill his desire to create educational documentaries, showcasing his ability to direct a team, serve as a cinematographer, and collaborate with curriculum designers and subject matter experts to ensure content accuracy. By working on the CCA Ecology Video Series, Abdullah expanded his skillset and portfolio as a filmmaker, gaining valuable experience in creating compelling educational content and managing complex projects, which allowed him to expand his portfolio in meaningful and impactful ways.

The Wintriest Storm: Rupture

(Web Series Proof of Concept, 2021)

Director - Writer - Editor

The Wintriest Storm: Rupture is a gripping proof-of-concept episode that delves into a near-future, war-torn country where the Grain Family seeks justice against looters who have occupied a house of worship and massacred the war relief volunteers within. In this intense and thought-provoking episode, relationships are tested, enemies are made, and sacrifices are the only option. Inspired by real-life stories of war-torn civilian lives, this project draws parallels to works such as The Pianist (2002) and This War of Mine (2014). Developed in the Sundance Collab Directing Fundamentals program, Rupture is designed to gauge audience interest and serve as a pitching tool for film financing.

Zaytuna: First Spring

(Video lectures, 2022)

Director - Editor

Abdullah Abu-Mahfouz directed and edited two video lectures on Prophetic mindfulness for Zaytuna College's YouTube channel and website. As an American Muslim, working with Zaytuna College was a significant milestone in Abdullah's career. This project showcased his client interfacing skills, treatment writing abilities, and ability to execute client goals. The videos successfully met their metrics of an average watch time of 10 minutes per video and 15,000 views in the first month per video. This experience highlights Abdullah's versatility in creating content that resonates with a niche audience.

Pure Wild Tea

(Short Documentary, 2022)

Director - Cinematographer

Pure Wild Tea is a 5-minute documentary that offers a glimpse into the world of a small, family-run farm in Pennsylvania, showcasing their process of crafting pure, wild mint tea from the fields to the processing room. Created as part of a series of career films for students at the Commonwealth Charter Academy (CCA), this documentary is directed by Abdullah Abu-Mahfouz, who opted for an observational style, allowing the Pure Wild Tea brand to authentically tell its own story. Abdullah has consistently valued authentic storytelling throughout his career, steering clear of forced narratives. By embracing this approach for Pure Wild Tea, he demonstrates his ability to adapt his directorial style to suit the subject matter, ensuring the film effectively engages and educates the target audience while staying true to his core values as a filmmaker.

Stand Up

(Feature-Length Documentary, 2016)

Producer - Director - Writer - Cinematographer - Editor

Stand Up is an inspiring and emotional 80-minute documentary that follows the underdog wrestling team of CD East High as they face off against Pennsylvania's elite District III tournaments. The team's dream of making it to the state championship for the first time in five years lies in the hands of two determined seniors, Cevon and Joe, whose friendship and perseverance embody the spirit of wrestling. Through Stand Up, Abdullah Abu-Mahfouz captures the wrestlers' heart, love, and transformation, as well as the life lessons they learn from defying defeat and overcoming adversity. The documentary is available to watch for free on YouTube as a testament to the healing and inspiring power of sports and storytelling.

Who's Your Daddy

(Music Video, 2020)

Director - Editor

Abdullah Abu-Mahfouz directed the playful music video for The Mimic's "Who's Your Daddy," breaking a six-month self-quarantine hiatus. Emphasizing laughter and spontaneity, the video follows a man leaving self-quarantine, pursued by an Easter Bunny. Abdullah and lead singer Austin Greene focused on humor, leading to memorable scenes and a fun editing process. The COVID-19 pandemic impacted the film industry, but this skeleton-sized production exemplifies adaptability and resourcefulness, enabling Abdullah to continue creating engaging content despite the challenges.

1:6 Scale Passion

(Short Documentary, 2019)

Producer - Director - Editor

In this innovative short documentary, Abdullah captures the passion and dedication of 1:6 scale artist James Rohrbaugh during an intense creative burst. Eschewing the traditional "talking head" approach, 1:6 Scale Passion immerses the audience in the captivating world of scale model creation through a highly observational and subjective lens. The result is a motivational and inspiring film that encourages viewers to embrace their hobbies and creative pursuits with renewed vigor. The film has received praise for its unique storytelling and serves as the first in a series of mini-docs for Reel Nation Media members.


(Short Film, 2020)

Producer - Director - Writer - Editor - VFX

Dead ED is a 7-year-long first film project and showcases the grit and growth of director Abdullah Abu-Mahfouz. Set in a post-apocalyptic world, this ambitious short film faced numerous challenges during production. Despite obstacles like halted production and complex visual effects, Abu-Mahfouz persevered, learning new skills and dedicating countless hours to complete the film. A testament to grit and growth, Dead ED underlines the importance of perseverance in realizing one's vision, showcasing the resilience required in the world of filmmaking.

The Cost of Speeding

(News Segment, 2024)

Cinematographer - Editor

"The Cost of Speeding" is Abdullah Abu-Mahfouz's first news segment for Al Jazeera after graduating from the network's TV Reporting workshop. The story covers the speed limit change to 25mph in New York City. As the cinematographer and editor, Abdullah collaborated closely with journalists to help convey their narratives and gain firsthand experience in the fast-paced world of newsgathering. This opportunity allowed Abdullah to broaden his skillset and gain insights into the journalistic storytelling process, which is invaluable to his career as a film director. Working on a news segment honed his ability to adapt to different storytelling formats, work under tight deadlines, and collaborate with a diverse team.

Shalom House Setlist

(Short Documentary, 2021)

Director - Cinematographer - Editor

Shalom House Setlist is a heartfelt and inspiring episode of the Reel Artist series. It follows musician Tyler Jazz and graphic designer Krisztina Szabo as they volunteer to perform Christmas music at a women's shelter. Both Tyler and Krisztina, who have been victims of domestic abuse, use their artistic talents as a means to heal others and themselves. In this 5-minute mini-documentary, Abdullah Abu-Mahfouz captures the story's emotional core, highlighting the power of music, art, and compassion in overcoming adversity and bringing hope to those in need.

The Mouth on Tim's Hand

(Short Film, 2019)

Director - Editor

"The Mouth on Tim's Hand" is a short film created for Vidjam's 48-Hour Harrisburg PA 2019 Competition, a Central Pennsylvania-based non-profit organization that fosters local filmmaking communities. The film follows a new hire as he tries to conceal his demon on his first day at work. Participating in a 48-hour short film competition allowed Abdullah Abu-Mahfouz to sharpen his filmmaking skills by working under tight deadlines, making crucial creative decisions quickly, and collaborating effectively with a team


(Music Video, 2014)

Director - Editor

D.E.S.P.I.T.E. marks Abdullah Abu-Mahfouz's first foray into music video production. Created for Harrisburg, PA artist Logan Bowyer, Abdullah worked as a one-man film crew, skillfully capturing the transformative themes of the song. He connected the transition from night to day imagery with the artist's intention of addressing his past and focusing on the future for a successful career. The video showcases the city of Harrisburg by selecting locations based on the artist's personal history. Through this project, Abdullah learned the importance of finding collaborators who share his vision and staying true to his values while telling someone else's story.

Balogna Drop

(Short Documentary, 2015)

Director - Editor

Balogna Drop, a commissioned project for Al Jazeera America's online documentary initiative, showcases Lebanon, PA's unique and heartwarming New Year's tradition. This short documentary follows the community as they drop a 12-foot, 200-pound bologna from the sky, symbolizing unity, family, and support for those in need. Although the network was later closed, working on this project allowed Abdullah Abu-Mahfouz to develop crucial skills in pitching concepts and getting treatments approved by editors and producers.

Lola Rabbit

(Short Film, 2014)

Writer - Director - Editor

Lola Rabbit is a heartfelt short film that tells the story of Colin, a struggling father, as he tries to make the most of his final moments with his daughter Lola before she leaves with her mother. This film served as Abdullah Abu-Mahfouz's final project at Full Sail University, showcasing the culmination of the skills he had acquired throughout his studies. Shot on Super 35mm, Lola Rabbit highlights Abdullah's growth as a filmmaker in areas such as directing actors, cinematography, screenwriting, editing, and production management. The film was selected for the 2014 Orlando Film Festival.

Lamont Stanley

(YouTube Docuseries, 2014)

Director - Editor

In "Lamont Stanley," a YouTube docuseries, Abdullah Abu-Mahfouz chronicles the journey of bodybuilder Lamont Stanley as he shares workout routines and motivational themes with viewers. This project marked Abdullah's first entry into web series and sports filmmaking, allowing him to further develop his skills and storytelling abilities in the realm of self-improvement and transformation.


(Short Documentary, 2012)


Adrift is Abdullah Abu-Mahfouz's first documentary, exploring the world of hot air ballooning through the lens of Bob's Balloons, an Orlando-based business that offers unforgettable aerial experiences. Produced as part of the documentary classes at Full Sail University, Adrift allowed Abdullah to learn the art of documentary filmmaking, connecting with real people and uncovering their unique stories. By addressing his fear of heights, Abdullah discovered the film's healing potential and hoped to encourage others with similar anxieties to face their fears. Adrift showcases the transformative power of storytelling, as Abdullah found solace in the process of making the film, ultimately using it as a tool for healing and self-discovery.

Little Big Hero

(Short Film, 2013)

Writer - Director

Little Big Hero is a compelling short film set in war-torn Palestine. An 11-year-old boy faces his claustrophobia to navigate a devastated hospital in a desperate bid to save his father. As Abdullah Abu-Mahfouz's second short film (following Dead ED), Little Big Hero was shot on 16mm as part of his film school curriculum. During the making of this film, Abdullah honed his directing process, discovered his unique storytelling voice, and realized the potential to address issues he cared about through entertaining and engaging narratives. This film was a turning point for Abdullah, as it solidified his belief in creating media that serves as positive, conscious entertainment. Little Big Hero showcases Abdullah's commitment to producing conscious media art that inspires and resonates with audiences.

One Voice!

(Short Documentary, 2020)

Director - Editor

One Voice! is a poignant short documentary by Abdullah Abu-Mahfouz. It follows three American youths as they join a Pro-Palestinian protest in New York City to fight for Palestine's freedom. This film marks Abdullah's first venture into documentary filmmaking after finishing school and demonstrates his will to advocate for personal and political beliefs. Through creating One Voice!, Abdullah learned how to make a documentary independently, setting the foundation for his future works. Despite having limited equipment, he delivered a high-quality production showcasing his filmmaking skills. This project caught the attention of Al Jazeera, leading to further opportunities with the network.


  • White LinkedIn Icon
  • White Instagram Icon
  • Facebook - White Circle


bottom of page