Stories about film industry

India and Pakistan both share the spirit of Bollywood

The recently released Bollywood movie Airlift, based on the evacuation of Indians residing in Kuwait during the Gulf War of 1990, has won much acclaim in both India and Pakistan. Rightfully so, for its brilliant cinematography, outstanding performances by all the artists (especially Akshay Kumar who has steered away from typically playing romantic comedy or action roles) and its excellent screenplay. The tragic scenario of a war zone and how it can take away everything you have is depicted in a heart-rending manner, along with how man’s survival skills are put to the test. The apathy of many politicians and bureaucrats, as ...

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Should we look forward to Nasir Khan’s Bachaana?

We eagerly await the upcoming Lollywood movie, Bachaana, which is set to release this month. Having said that, I recently interviewed the director of this romantic-comedy, to get a clear insight of what to expect from this movie. 1. Tell us about your previous work especially Made in Pakistan “I have always been inclined towards film making and Made in Pakistan was also a step in that direction. I have been focused on making movies my entire life, and the documentary helped me improve as a storyteller. I started with a sitcom Bus Yunhi on HUM TV, and then my telefilm, 14 ...

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Stories from 2015 that could only have made headlines in Pakistan

It is the first day of January of 2016. Yes, the New Year has begun. We are all a bit older, wiser, and sadly, a little closer to death. Naturally, this is the perfect time to look back at some of the news stories that made headlines in Pakistan and across the world. Girls at Dhabas: For Pakistanis worn down by the taxing life of the big city, nothing quite reignites the brain cells like a good cup of doodh pati (tea). Sold at dhabas (roadside restaurants), these delicious cups of hot tea brewed in milk are consumed by the ...

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Move over, Shaan: Dear Lollywood, please stop with your nepotistic ways

Nepotism has a new face in Pakistan. Can you guess who it is? No, it’s not Nawaz Sharif. It’s not the Bhutto clan. It’s not the politicians or the bureaucracy. All those institutions have been swept aside by that new lady in town. We fondly call her ‘Lollywood’, but she’s more formally known as Pakistan’s film industry. She isn’t really new, but her recently acquired contemporary ornaments have taken years off her face. She wears Bol around her neck, carries Bin Roye under her arm and has crowned her head with Waar. In step with her is her entourage; a horde of uncles and aunties, brothers ...

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Dear haters, if anything, Umair Jaswal is taking Pakistan’s music industry forward

The music industry in Pakistan has had its golden age, when people used to listen to local music, invest in cassettes and CDs and were wholeheartedly devoted to the local musical talent. With the advent of technology and the internet, the music industry has suffered a hit. Now, people download pirated music off the internet. This has led to the deterioration of the industry and is highly discouraging for the Pakistani music artists. Now most artists rely on concerts, endorsements and pay checks from advertisements, instead of album sales, to keep their guitars strung. There have been attempts to revive the music industry which ...

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Rajinder Singh Bedi: Film-making is not child’s play

September 1st marks the birth centenary of Rajinder Singh Bedi, one of the most gifted and greatest fiction writers of the 20th century, completing the quartet whose membership also extends to Saadat Hasan Manto, Krishan Chander, and Ismat Chughtai. Bedi was a son of Punjab, born in Lahore. While his output was not as prodigious as his three aforementioned contemporaries, his stories are memorable, chastising ancient beliefs and superstitions which keep the ordinary person ignorant and the women oppressed. He was not a doctrinaire blinded by ideology as many of his contemporaries were, but rather than giving us the heady slogans of revolution, he preferred ...

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Why are we banning Saif Ali Khan’s movies but not his commercials?

Over the past few years, Pakistan has witnessed a boom in its film and drama industry. This has come as a blessing for most young and struggling actors. Previously, our industry had a handful of skilled actors, the same faces, and barely any room for new talent, which proved to be quite mundane for the audience. Due to the mass awareness and globalisation, we’ve witnessed the mushrooming of numerous sitcoms starring new and fresh faces, such as Mawra Hocane, Osman Khalid Butt, Hareem Farooq, Adeel Hussain and the list goes on. It’s rather refreshing to see that directors and producers have taken it upon themselves to cast ...

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Five reasons why you should (or should not) watch Bin Roye

Bin Roye’s premiere was held at Nueplex Cinema yesterday and the entire setup was done up beautifully with motiyas (jasmine) used as a pretty backdrop. It was a star studded night, boasting of celebrities from the star cast of Bin Roye – Mahira Khan, Humayun Saeed and Armeena Khan along with Behroz Sabzwari, Shehroz Sabzwari and Syra Shehroz who were there to support Javed Shaikh. Bushra Ansari, Imran Abbas, and Angelina Malik also dropped by to show support for the cast and the movie. Mahira plays the lead role as Saba, while Humayun plays the role of her cousin Irtiza. Javed Shaikh and Zeba Bakhtiar are casted as ...

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Birdman, a modern day masterpiece

Birdman has become the latest film to join the likes of 12 Years A Slave, American Beauty and Forrest Gump by winning the Academy Award for Best Picture. While many people are still sulking over Boyhood’s loss, I for one believe the Academy got it right this time. Birdman is Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu’s masterpiece of our time. Bold in execution, the film is a technical showpiece that succeeds on just about every level. Birdman is a fascinating behind-the-scenes look into Hollywood, and the psyche of an actor. It’s also a satire on the film industry. While there have been many ...

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Is ‘Haider’ really a threat to Pakistan’s ideology?

This is not a review of the film ‘Haider’, but an evaluation of the strong political reactions it has generated. This review is unsuitable for adults easily aggrieved by unfavourable judgement of their political views. Vishal Bhardwaj has established himself as an artist who likes to prod controversial subjects, just to see what happens. While the film itself boasts an impressive rendition of Shakespeare’s magnus opus, set to the beat of dazzling musical numbers, and jaw-dropping footage of the embattled valley, what truly stands out is its boldness. India: 2/5 stars While Haider managed to successfully squeeze its way through tight grasp of the Central Board ...

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