Pak film short listed for award
LONDON, Oct 21- A Pakistani film “Ramchand Pakistani” has been nominated for the award of “The Sutherland Trophy” at the on going 52nd London Film Festival. Director Mehreen Jabbar’s powerful debut film set on the Indo-Pakistan Thar Desert border and based on a true life story is among 12 films short listed for the coveted award to be announced at the end of festival on October 30.
Screened twice at the British Film Theatre on the South Bank along River Thames, the film drew capacity crowd on each occasion.
The film producer and former Federal Minister Javed Jabbar told APP Correspondent Fawad Hashmey that the movie won a FIPRESCI (International Federation of Film Critics) Award at the recent New Delhi film festival.
The film has also been shown at the New York film festival and is due to be screened at the Dubai festival in December.
Jabbar said the film has also been released for commercial viewings in Pakistan as well as in the Indian capital and has drawn appreciation from the film goers.
He said the talks were being held with the UK and Europe distributors for its release in the Western Europe.
Calling for the revival of Pakistan film industry, Jabbar appreciated the recent steps by the past and present Governments to allow the screening of the Indian movies in Pakistani cinema houses and said this would assist in revitalizing the dormant local film industry.
“Recent Governments have shown positive attitude in this regard but we need to construct more cinema houses to cater to the need of film enthusiasts and breathe new life into our film industry,”he said.
The film is about trial and tribulation of a Pakistani Hindu family living in the Thar Desert after Ramchand, a wilful single child from the low caste Hindu parents who after argument with his mother Champa runs out and inadvertently crosses into the Indian border.
His father follows him and both are arrested as Pakistani spies and thrown into jail and integrated. As months go by Champa, back in Pakistan, has to cope with the terrible loss of her family and solitary struggle for her very survival. Syed Fazal Hussain as Ramchand, Rashid Farooqi as Shankar (His father) and Indian actress Nandita Das as Champa offer riveting performances while the poignant film is also underpinned by stunningly beautiful cinematography and an evocative film music score.
After four years in Indian jails, both son and father are returned home as a result of thaw in relations between the two neighbouring countries and their subsequent agreement to exchange prisoners.
Source: The Nation