But no embargo on the release of Indian films, says Pak distributor
By Manishaa R
The release of the much anticipated biopic on cricketing legend, Mahendra Singh Dhoni, M.S.Dhoni-The Untold Story, has been put on hold in Pakistan. As of now, the film is unlikely to release in Pakistan. However the decision has nothing to do with media reports of a likely ban on all Indian films, following recent political developments. This was confirmed by veteran Pakistani distributor, Amjad Rashid of IMGC Global Entertainment-one of the oldest distribution companies, which is also set to release the upcoming movie Mirziya in Pakistan, “We will be taking a call on MS Dhoni, only after reviewing its content, considering that India-Pakistan matches will also be the focal point of the film. It would not be welcome if Pakistan is portrayed in a bad light in the film,” Rashid revealed. However he clarified that his company is all set to go ahead with the release of another film Mirziya, written by famed lyricist Gulzar and directed by Rakeysh Om Prakash Mehra, “We are well aware of Gulzarji’s legendary style of story-telling and we intend to do complete justice to the film after it is cleared by the Pakistan Censor Board,” he said, adding that the Censor Board only had issues with films that made derogatory references to the country. The Pak Government chose to ban some Indian films for this very reason.”
On being asked about reports that the Pak Government was planning to stop the release of all Indian films in the aftermath of Pakistani artistes being asked to leave the country, Rashid said that there was no such official communication, “All those reports are only media-made. The Pakistan Government has not taken any official stand. In fact, Banjo was also released last week in Pakistan without problems. The Pakistan Government has never quite imposed an embargo on Indian films at any point of time, despite the fact that Indian films have cut hugely into the business of Pakistani films. On the contrary, it is India which has often been resistant to the idea of releasing Pakistani films.”
Meanwhile, the President of Indian Film Exporters Association has confirmed that MS Dhoni is unlikely to release in Pakistan, “To the best of my knowledge the film may not be released in Pakistan,” he said. Mr Dand also felt the fate of Indian films was a bit unsure going by the present political climate, “There is no official communication but we will wait and watch,” he said.
It may be recalled that Pakistan is considered a big territory in terms of revenue for Indian films. According to reports, Sultan earned a revenue share of 1.7 million dollars for Yash Raj Films and even a not so happening film like Baar Baar Dekho, earned a share of 2 lakh dollars. (More details in epaper.absolute India news.com)