This fascinating documentary is a soaring panorama of the horse that began in Arabia and went on to create Empires and champions today in every category. The film tells the story of the development of the Arabian horse breed, from its earliest days until present, including rare footage filmed in the Kingdom and young Arabic women riding horses.



LENGTH: 60 Minutes
MSRP: $24.95
CATALOG #: 20526
UPC #: 6-4603205269-5
ISBN #: 1-56839-475-6
PRODUCER: SeaCastle Films

In addition to being available as a DVD for home-use only, this title is available to colleges, universities, non-profit institutions and community groups with both Public Performance Rights (PPR) and Digital Site Licenses (DSL). For PPR and DSL ordering information, click here.


Filmed on location in Saudi Arabia, Oman, Great Britain, Kentucky, and California with the Saudi Equestrian riders, the Oman Royal Cavalry, National Jumping Champions, National Dressage Champions, National Western Champions, National Working Cowhorse Champions, The Arabian Horse: A Gift from the Desert shows the Arabian horse in its native environment while telling the dynamic story of its impact on civilization. “A magnificent horse, with a magnificent history and presence today.”

Produced and directed by award-winning filmmaker Jo Franklin, president of SeaCastle Films. Franklin is noted for her eight highly acclaimed productions on Saudi Arabia and the Near East, all of which appeared in prime-time broadcasts on the Public Broadcasting Service.   Named “One of the Top 100 Film Producers in the US” by Millimeter Magazine,  Franklin is a rider and breeder of Arabian horses. She is a member of the Arabian Horse Association, the Pyramid Society, and the World Arabian Horse Organization.

Cover photograph courtesy of Om El Arab International


“Brilliant!   Galloping out of remotest antiquity, prancing majestically at mankind’s most fabled royal courts, in an awe-inspiring destiny siring all the lineages of racing’s thoroughbreds as well as the mounts for Napolean’s lancers and Gustavus Adolphus’ “Polish-Arabs,”  the “Gift from the Desert” is the gorgeously enchanting star of this wondrous film. “At this moment when tragic images bombard us nightly from the Middle East, one of our world’s most expert film-makers has launched a star into our sadly darkened sky. Gift from the Desert chronicles an all too rare interaction with the Arab world whereby 19/20th century U.S. breeders helped to “save” this splendid breed. For joy as well as useful wisdom – come and view this beautiful film !”  Dr. Carney Gavin, Historian

“This is a fascinating film viewers are sure to enjoy again and again! It tells the remarkable story of the Arabian horse from its ancient desert beginnings to its place in the world today. The most beautiful equine athlete captivates with its grace and stamina.”  Arabian Horse Association

“A wonderful film! A fascinating and entertaining story whether you are a horse expert or novice.”  Karen House, Pulitzer Prize Winner, former Publisher Wall Street Journal

The journey is a wonderful story all by itself, and I won’t spoil it here! I will say that oil production and consumption play a significant role, but with a strange twist that I had never stumbled across before. Like most kids I really had no interest in history at school. It seemed a dry and boring subject. I was wrong, history is a fabulous and rich textured subject.

The Arabian Horse: The Gift From The Desert is a fine example of  why history is so important, this is a great documentary. You do not need to be a horse lover to enjoy it. The clips of vintage film are wonderful, and the new footage added is quite frankly stunning.”