ISLAMABAD: Pakistan has put forward a film for the Oscars for the first time in nearly 50 years as its struggling film industry shows signs of revival, officials said yesterday.
“The Pakistani Academy Selection Committee has selected Zinda Bhaag as the first Pakistani film in over fifty years to be submitted for Oscar consideration in the ‘Foreign Language Film Award’ category at the 86th Academy Awards,” a statement issued by the selectors said.
In addition to Zinda Bhaag (Flee Alive), a further three films were submitted to the committee for consideration: Chambeli, Josh and Lamha.
The selection was made last week through secret ballot and Zinda Bhaag was the “overwhelming film of choice of the Committee members”.
The film is a comedy-thriller about three young men trying to escape the drudgery of their everyday lives through the use of unconventional methods available to them. The movie hits the cinemas on September 20.
The film’s narrative is familiar to everyday Pakistanis. The protagonists have unfulfilled desires to achieve feats that are out of their reach and a yearning to prove themselves despite the hurdles before them.
Yet an inescapable sense of melancholy sets in when they discover their opportunities are dictated by forces outside of their control. The film is directed and written by Meenu Gaur and Farjad Nabi, and is produced by Mazhar Zaidi. It features Indian born Bollywood stalwart Naseeruddin Shah, as well as Amna Ilyas and Khurram Patras in leading roles.