Thursday, 23 May 2013

Veteran comedian Rangeela being remembered

Veteran comedian Rangeela being remembered
KARACHI: Pakistan's legend actor Rangeela is being remembered today (Friday) on his death anniversary, SAMAA reported.

Rangeela was born as Mohammad Saeed Khan in 1937, in Parachinar, Pakistan. Rangeela made his professional cinematic debut in a 1958 Punjabi film called 'Jatti‘.

His movie career started back in the late 1950s. Despite acting in the movies, he also directed many of them. He also sung many songs and wrote some scripts.

The super hit film 'Diya Aur Toofan', May 9, 1969, was Rangeela's directional debut. Additionally, he was also the producer- singer- writer- actor of the movie.

He directed numerous movies under the banner of 'Rangeela productions'. Excellence of his acting potential was enormous in the super hit film 'Rangeela', September 11, 1970, in which he played the title role of Rangeela.

Director- producer- actor- writer, Rangeela earned plaudits from his adorers for his third consecutive super hit film 'Dil aur duniya', October 1, 1971, with Habib, Aasia and Rangeela as cast of the movie.

The above three films were big hits at the box office in a row. Thus, Rangeela successfully completed the 'hat trick' of his movies. He brings to the film 'Dil aur duniya', the sobering sense of a director's prowess which is the very opposite to his celluloid persona.

Rangeela has been a dominant force in the Pakistani cinema for over forty years. He won many awards. With the passage of time his health deteriorated and Rangeela crossed over on May 24, 2005, in Lahore. 

Friday, 17 May 2013

Troubled Lollywood gets a visa!

The words “deteriorating”, “declining” and “dismal” have often been employed to describe our film industry. To be fair, Lollywood never really made a mark internationally in terms of presence, popularity or an intense fan following. But for the first time, a Lollywood production is being premiered internationally, with Ishq Khuda slated for screening at the Punjabi International Film Festival (PIFF) 2013 in Toronto on May 18. Is this, we wonder, the beginning of a new era for the industry? Are things finally looking up?
“The demand for a Pakistani film in Canada is rock solid,” director Shahzad Rafique tells The Express Tribune from India, where he is currently working. He says that festival organiser Sunny Gill was “very eager to play a quality Pakistani film.”
Adding that the release of Bol is a reflection of this demand, he says, “Bol did better than any Bollywood film which was released around the same time – if we want to make space for our movies in the global market, we need to tackle subjects which have international relevance. Otherwise the vision of our cinema will remain limited [to just Pakistan].”
The film’s cast includes Ahsan Khan, Meera, Shaan and Moroccan actor Wiam Dhamani. Meera and Wiam are currently in Toronto to promote the movie at PIFF – an annual event which aims to bring Punjabi culture into the spotlight.
The film’s director Shahzad Rafique feels the demand for a Pakistani film in Canada is “rock solid”. PHOTO: PUBLICITY
Ishq Khuda experiments with the themes of sufism and spirituality. Rafique explains that the project was an attempt to raise the question of “higher love” in comparison to the pursuit of relatively selfish worldly desires. The soundtrack, which has already received rave reviews since its release last month, has been composed by Wajahat Attray and includes the strong vocals of Rahat Fateh Ali Khan and Sanam Marvi. It also features the return of renowned playback singer Shazia Manzoor.
“Film is a powerful medium of communication and representation. It’s very important for Pakistani films to have a global market,” continues Rafique. “We need to show the world who we are as a nation and clear all misunderstandings about us.” He feels local producers haven’t been able to take advantage of the growing international market due to the lack of quality output.
The film’s director Shahzad Rafique feels the demand for a Pakistani film in Canada is “rock solid”. PHOTO: PUBLICITY
The director admits that it was the global value he added to Ishq Khuda which helped promote a softer image of the film. He has also produced films such as Salakhain (2004) andMohabbataan Sachiyaan (2007) which did well internationally despite non-conducive conditions – they were also released in India and were rated 2.5 and 3.5 out of five, respectively, by the Times of India.
Although Rafique is unsure of how the film will be received by the audience, he remains positive that they will appreciate the final product. “I really can’t say anything about how it will do at the box office but I have said everything I wanted to through this film,” he continues. “I am satisfied with the end result and now it’s really just up to the viewers.”
The film’s director Shahzad Rafique feels the demand for a Pakistani film in Canada is “rock solid”. PHOTO: PUBLICITY
At the end, the director says he is screening the film abroad to inspire young film-makers. “I’m trying to form pathways for them which will open up avenues for the exhibition of their work internationally.”
After its first screening in Toronto, the film is expected to be released in Pakistan on Eidul Fitr.

Thursday, 9 May 2013

With help from stakeholders, Josh will make it to the big screen!

Director Iram Parveen Bilal says that The Platform initiative gave her dreams ‘wings to fly.’ PHOTO: PUBLICITY
KARACHI: Tuesday afternoon marked the launch of  The Platform, a much-needed initiative to promote the talent of young and emerging Pakistani film-makers, at Atrium Cinemas. Following the launch was a curtain raiser of the upcoming Pakistani movie Josh, which has been directed by Iram Parveen Bilal.
A collaborative effort of Nadeem Mandviwalla of Mandviwalla Entertainment and Mohammad Jerjees Seja, the CEO of Ary Digital Network, The Platform has been introduced to support young film-makers to promote and market their films.
“Though much has been done by the government of Pakistan to raise the standard of cinemas in the country since 2001, there has been a lack of evolution in the process,” said Mandviwalla, who was present at the event. “While new cinemas have been built since the beginning of 2007, the question that seems to bother most Pakistanis is, when will films be made?”
He added that it is important to understand that cinemas are run by the public; the success and the failure of a film depend solely on how audiences perceive and rate it.
Seja added that with their partnership with Mandviwalla Entertainment, The Platform will help sponsor, promote and distribute new local films. Focusing on the purpose of The Platform, he said, “This is an initiative taken in the interest of the country’s emerging film-makers, to come forward and show their work.” Seja also stressed that there is a lot of talent within Pakistan and its importance cannot be downplayed despite the intervention of international media ventures such as Indian and Turkish soaps.
Get ready for Josh!
As their first project, the duo promoted the upcoming movie Josh, which is scheduled to release on Eid. The Express Tribune asked the film’s writer, director and producer Iram Parveen Bilal, about her inspiration behind her career choice. “My father told me a while back that my paternal grandfather left his home in 1937, to become an actor. However, his dream could not be fulfilled.  Seventy-six years later, I have vicariously fulfilled his dream,” said Iram. Appreciating Seja and Mandviwalla’s efforts, she said that the duo had given her dreams “wings to fly.”
The film, Josh, is inspired from the life of Perveen Saeed, the founder of Khana Ghar, a charity that provides heavily subsidised meals to the poor. “My feelings cannot be assessed; they are on a different level. I play a humble, domesticated role and Khana Ghar was a small venture of my own. I hope one day nobody in this country sleeps hungry,” said an overwhelmed Perveen.
When asked about whether her film will garner any appreciation from the audience, Bilal said, “Every one’s taste is different; how you will like it or not, depends solely on your taste for it.”
With an industry that has suffered immense backlash in the past few years, especially with the influx of foreign cinema, The Platform seems to bring a new ray of hope for young directors and film-makers who are struggling to pursue their dream in this small-sized industry. However, Mandviwalla makes it clear that Bollywood films will not be rescheduled for Pakistani films. He firmly believes that the viewership of a film depends highly on the quality of the content and every film deserves a shot at the silver screen.