News Desk |
Mahira Khan’s latest venture ‘Verna’ is among the top women-centric films that will be screened in the UK’s South Asian Film Festival, starting from March 15th until March 25th, 2018.
The festival will celebrate 20 years of championing independent South Asian cinema. The screening of the movies will be held in four location including Edinburgh, Manchester, Leicester, and London.
At the opening gala, the festival will honor the heroic performances of the ladies who have dared to break different taboos associated with women in society.
Mahira Khan was featured as a rape victim in ‘Verna’. The film depicts the story of her struggles against those in power that manipulate the justice system to escape punishment. It calls out to challenge the perception of victim-blaming in cases of rape and sexual assault. The film suffered severe backlash before its release in Pakistan due to the sensitivity of the topic at hand. The Censor Board delayed its release and made many changes before allowing screening.
On the first days of the event, Mahira will hold question and answer sessions with the audience followed by the screening of her movie next day, on March 16th, 2018.
Talking about the event, Dr. Pushpinder Chowdhry, the festival’s founding director, said, “We are delighted to be celebrating the festival’s 20th anniversary by expanding nationally and giving audiences across the UK the opportunity of engaging with our programme of screenings, guest talks, and events with a strong, feminist theme.”
She went on to add, “From its inception, the festival has always championed gender equality in cinema, launching 20 years back at a time when there was but a handful of Asian women film-makers and the scope of female roles was restricted to women of a certain age, confined to certain archetypal parameters.”
“We are finally seeing a shift in this, as women continue to create a space for themselves in South Asian cinema, redefining and expanding their roles both in front of and behind the camera and on their own terms. We continue to celebrate those achievements with a rich showcase that represents the ever-evolving contributions and representations of women to the cinema,” she added.
Read more: Verna still has a chance!
The film is anticipated to garner appreciation from international viewers and put Pakistani cinema on the world map after the festival comes to an end.