'Karachi You're Killing Me' goes to Bollywood

Published: April 9, 2015

The bestseller which left celebrated writer Mohammed Hanif laughing in fits has now come to the attention of Bollywood. Karachi You’re Killing Me, a novel written by Pakistani journalist Saba Imtiaz is soon to become a Hindi film.

Makers of the upcoming Bollywood movie, Airlift, have bought film rights from the young journalist and plan on putting the project to work by the end of this year. The novel, which centers on Ayesha Khan, a journalist, and chronicles her life in Karachi, is a Bridget Jones’s Diary meets the Diary of a Social Butterfly, “a comedy of manners in a city with none,” as Saba describes it.

The author, Saba will be working closely with the production team to help develop the film. However, the makers are planning to revise the novel to fit an Indian context. “It’s tentatively called Delhi, You’re Killing Me and will be entirely set in the Old Delhi environment. The hunt for a young female actress to play Ayesha is currently on,” said a source close to the development.

In an interview with Mumbai Mirror, Malhotra could hardly contain his excitement, “The story excited me just the way Queen had when Vikas Bahl had first narrated it to me.”

The book, which became a roaring success upon its release, illustrates the life of a progressive-thinking journalist in her late twenties, who drinks and smokes, putting her modern attitude in contrast to the city’s orthodox elements. “I have full faith that Karachi You’re Killing Me will translate into a film that will resonate with today’s audience, especially women as they will see a slice of their lives in it! Work is in full swing on adapting the book into a film and we will finalise the cast soon,” said Malhotra.

Saba Imtiaz has previously worked as a reporter and as head of the Life & Style desk at The Express Tribune.

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Reader Comments (14)

  • Apr 9, 2015 - 3:23PM

    So Saba could not find the filmmaker in Lollywood? Pakistani film maker would have been more able to do the justice to her work. But I think it’s all about money. Recommend

  • RiffyR
    Apr 9, 2015 - 4:12PM

    I think the story was a little Bollywoodish at the end anyway..The film might actually turn out to be a better adaptation. Recommend

  • Apr 9, 2015 - 4:15PM

    @Ayesha: There is no ethics in Pakistan’s media industry. I am glad QMobile gets international models for its ads. Locals lack a sincere personal brand. Nothing to bank on. Recommend

  • Parvez
    Apr 9, 2015 - 4:34PM

    Read the book some time back…..not bad, possibly it will turn out better as a movie.Recommend

  • Jor El
    Apr 9, 2015 - 4:40PM

    @Ayesha: U said it …Recommend

  • Yusuf
    Apr 9, 2015 - 6:11PM

    Karachi always been an easy prey city both local and international operators. The authorities been turning Blind Eye to urban sprawling after overthrow of President Ayub Khan. Its turning into Mega City Slum and many areas like M.A. Jinnah Road, Burns Road, Napier Road, Kemari, Machar Colony, giving classical looks of Ghettoization in process. Islamabad is sucking Tax Money out of Karachi giving Negligible input into its city development. Ghettoize Karachi. Shame on Islamabad and current Sind Government.Recommend

  • Dr. M. Wajid Khan
    Apr 9, 2015 - 7:16PM

    Sickening critics ought to shut up. This girl has achieved something to be proud of. Feeble minded should refrain from commenting unnecessarily. Instead, do something that is commendable.Recommend

  • Prof. K. M. Sohrab
    Apr 9, 2015 - 7:19PM

    Great accomplishment. Keep up the good work and make your dreams come trueRecommend

  • Hafeez Peerzada
    Apr 9, 2015 - 7:25PM

    Another star from Pakistan will soon shine on the Indian and international horizons. Express deserves credit for cultivating talentRecommend

  • Zain Agha
    Apr 9, 2015 - 7:28PM

    The book was a smash hit. I bought several copies for overseas friends.
    Hope the makers of Queen make a blockbuster out of itRecommend

  • Gp65
    Apr 10, 2015 - 12:40AM

    Since barely 5-6 movies are made in Lollywood she probably DID NOT find a producer there. Also what is wrong if she pursues money?Recommend

  • ABKhan
    Apr 10, 2015 - 9:42AM


    5-6 quality movies are produced in Pakistan, not over 1000 cheap copies of Hollywood every year is produced here like BollywoodRecommend

  • Vijaykumar Padiyachi
    Apr 10, 2015 - 12:35PM

    No need to revise it to fit in Indian context.Indian will love and can relate to it even if made in KarachiRecommend

  • optimist
    Apr 10, 2015 - 1:38PM

    @ GP65
    What makes you say all these anti Pakistani film industry things? I have seen your posts in the pasts where you spent paragraphs after paragraphs telling us that Pakistani movies (esp Waar) are super flop and now you want to dismiss the whole film industry which is seeing a growth that is phenomenal to say the least. Quality of our films and even number of films being made is increasing many folds every year.

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