According to Arab News, the new plan is set to "transform Saudi Arabia into one of the top 10 international entertainment destinations." With this, the authority's officials will organize functions on a scale never seen before in the kingdom.
Here's everything you need to know about Saudi Arabia's grand entertainment plans:
1. Restaurants and cafes will now be allowed to host musical events
During a press conference, Al Al-Sheikh said the kingdom will be granting cafes and restaurants licenses to host musical events, stand-up comedy shows, and magic tricks.
2. Madame Tussauds museum will open in Jeddah and Riyadh
Al Al-Sheikh also revealed the plan to open two Madame Tussauds waxworks museums in Riyadh and Jeddah. Both will also feature a wax model of King Faisal, according to Arab News.
3. Jay-Z and DJ Khaled will perform in the kingdom
The GEA's officials are already negotiating long-term contracts with over 100 local and international partners.
Under these contracts, megastars like Jay-Z and DJ Khaled are set to perform in the kingdom.
4. International and local stand-up comedians are also set to perform live shows
The plan also features live stand-up comedy shows set to be performed by the world's most popular comedians.
Al Al-Sheikh said performances under negotiation include ones featuring Chris Tucker، Chris Rock, Seth Rogan, and Trevor Noah.
4. Legal drifting rinks are set to open
Car drifting is a widely popular activity among young Saudis.
The activity can be extremely dangerous when performed on public streets and is generally frowned upon by Saudi authorities. This is why the new entertainment plan aims to make it an organized activity.
During his speech to the press, Al Al-Sheikh addressed this point, saying:
"Now rather than have someone drink soft drinks and annoy us on the streets, we have a new initiative with the General Sports Authority to launch rallies where youths can drift in safety, far from the public streets."
5. Live shows, theatrical plays, and bazaars to be held across the kingdom
The new plan also includes a huge number of concerts, theatrical events, and live magic performances.
The head of the Entertainment Authority also said that circuses from around the world, bazaars, and outdoor cinemas will be organized across the kingdom.
Other events announced include a winter wonderland exhibition, bull fight show, ballot championship, and e-gaming functions.
The kingdom is also set to build and open several floating restaurants in 2019.
7. Religious competitions will be a huge part of entertainment
As part of his announcements, Al Al-Sheikh said several religious entertainment events and competitions will be held this year.
"The most important will take place during Ramadan and will be of an Islamic nature, with the supervision of Islamic scholars," he explained.
Competitions include "the most beautiful reciting of the Holy Qur’an" and he best call for prayer (athan).
Another contest set to be held is the Hijra Journey competition, which will see participants walk between Mecca and Medina in a reenactment of Prophet Muhammad's journey of migration.
8. Sports events and championships are also part of the plan
Al Al-Sheikh said that under his supervision, the authority will organize friendly matches featuring legendary footballers like David Beckham and Zinedine Zidane.
He is also working on holding an NBA championship basketball game in the kingdom.
9. GEA launched an initiative aimed at honoring Saudi artists
During his press conference, Al Al-Sheikh said the authority decided to launch an initiative aimed at honoring singers, composers, and poets who contributed to Saudi culture.
Under this initiative, hologram concerts will be held in tribute of each artist.
10. The government body's new plan aims to help discover and nurture Saudi talents
Speaking to press, Al Al-Sheikh said one of the main goals of Saudi Arabia's Entertainment Authority in 2019 is to discover and nurture Saudi talents.
This is why the government body aims to help local artists host performances, exhibitions, and events abroad.
"One of the many visions we have is that our local talent performs not only in Saudi Arabia but also abroad," Al Al-Sheikh said.
He also added that the kingdom will be sponsoring the education of local artists outside of the kingdom.