KARACHI: Pakistan’s first International Film Festival took place in Karachi over the weekend and it was truly an affair to remember. The event, spread over six different locations in Karachi, boasted panel discussions featuring prominent personalities from the Pakistani film industry, movie screenings and premieres and a star-studded awards night.
Members of the Bollywood film industry including acclaimed actor and director, Nandita Das, veteran actor Vinay Pathak, Bahubali director SS Ranjouli, Gulabi Gang director Nishtha Jain, award-winning director Vishal Bhardwaj along with his wife Rekha Bhardwaj, and Subhash Kapoor were among those who graced the event with their presence.
The event concluded with an elaborate awards night, which had whose-who of the Pakistani film industry in attendance. Stars from Humayun Saeed, Mahira Khan, Meera Jee, Ali Rehman Khan, Ayesha Omar, Ali Zafar, Farhan Saeed, Hareem Farooq, Sanam Saeed, Adnan Malik and Aamina Sheikh, Strings duo Bilal Maqsood and Faisal Kapadia, to acclaimed filmmakers including Asim Raza and Mehreen Jabbar were all those who attended the ceremony. Minister of State for Information and Broadcasting Marriyum Aurangzeb was also part of the event.
Speaking at the event, Humayun Saeed said, “This last month has been great for us: first PSL and now this. We couldn’t be happier.”
“We’re grateful to KFS and Sultana Siddiqui for opening their arms to you all,” Mahira Khan said while addressing the international delegation. “But more than that, we’re grateful to you for coming running into these arms.”
Mariyum Aurangzeb also spoke at the event, thanking the international delegation for being part of the event “and showing that people from other countries can also come to Pakistan and assist Pakistani cinema in its revival.”
A soul-rendering performance by Abida Parveen was the highlight of the event and left the crowds mesmerised.
The winners include:
Best Actor (Male) – Fahad Mustafa for Actor In Law
Best Actor (Female) – Mehwish Hayat for Actor in Law
Best Film – Punjab Nai Jaungi
Artist for Peace – Ali Zafar
Best Director – Nadeem Baig for Punjab Nai Jaungi
Best Script – Khalil Ur Rehman Qamar for Punjab Nai Jaungi
Best Debut (Male) – Ali Rehman Khan for Janaan
Best Debut (Female) – Hania Aamir for Janaan
Best Music – Adnan Dhol for Chupan Chupai
Best Cinematographer – Rana Kamran for Na Maloom Afraad
Best Edit – Mitesh Soni for Janaan
Best Feature – Lala Begum
Best Short Film – Aghaei Nazim (by Hamid Reza Hosseinian from Iran)
Best Documentary Short – Veil Done (India)
Best Documentary Feature – Perween Rahman: The Rebel Optimist
Here’s to hoping that more of such successful events take place in the country.