KARACHI: Almost a year and a half has lapsed since the roaring success of Na Maloom Afraad, but the achievement still continues to echo in the evolving Pakistani film industry.
Having provided local filmmakers with a template for comedy films, there had been a lot of curiosity regarding the director-producer duo, Nabeel Qureshi and Fizza Ali Meerza’s next project.
Putting all those questions and queries to rest, the two officially unveiled their next project, a social comedy titled Actor In Law. While the return of Fahad Mustafa and Mehwish Hayat adds to the charm of the movie, the real catch for cinemagoers will be Bollywood actor Om Puri marking his Pakistani film debut.
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Not willing to divulge into plot details of the film, director Nabeel Qureshi described it as a "social-comedy".
Even though Qureshi acknowledged there was a certain monkey on their back following the popularity of Na Maloom Afraad, he was determined to ensure that his follow-up was better than his previous film.
"Rather than telling jokes, I enjoy telling stories. And audiences can expect the same with Actor In Law as well since it has a very unique story," said Qureshi.
With the first spell of shooting nearing completion, the cast shared experiences of working on the movie and sharing screen-space with Om Puri.
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Fahad Mustafa sang praises for the production team behind Na Maloom Afraad, terming the previous movie as an "ice-breaker". He shared the film opened multiple avenues for local cinema. Stressing on the importance of telling different stories, Mustafa exclaimed it was the script for the film that was the real winner.
"Our film industry is growing and the world needs to see the various interesting stories that we have to tell," said the actor.
Apart from Mustafa, the film also stars Alyy Khan who has previously appeared in Indian movies like Don 2.
Sharing how this collaboration came about, Khan said, "Unlike the rest of the cast and crew that had previously worked in Na Maloom Afraad, I met the duo filming an advertisement for a digestive. And it was there that we felt the need to collaborate on something."
Where most of the cast seemed dressed to impress, Om Puri walked on to the stage in a black shalwar kurta as he proceeded to take his place between the director and producer.
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It seemed as though the actor felt completely at home despite this being the first time he was appearing in a Pakistani film. But for a person who has previously played the late General Zia Ul Haq in Charlie Wilson's War - he felt it was a natural progression that he was finally appearing in a film across the border.
Praising the team for churning out a remarkable script, the actor even threw some light filming in the city of lights. “In one hand I had a briefcase and in other a file and Nabeel just drove me around Karachi on his two-wheeler," recalled the Bollywood actor.
Directed and produced by Nabeel Qureshi and Fizza Ali Meerza, respectively, the film is based on an original script written by the duo. The film also stars Mehwish Hayat, Rehan Sheikh and Talat Hussain. The music for the film is composed by Shani Arshad whereas Rana Kamran serves as the director of photography. Actor In Law is expected to release on Eidul Azha, 2016.