Published (sans my name) in Daily Times / Karachi pages 28 Sep 2014. Hope someone fixes the mistake in their online edition.
Thank you Pheby Haroon for the invite.
While the premise spawns endless conspiracy theories, espionage appears to be a logical extension of the counter-terrorism angle. The Af-Pak / US trinity becomes the perfect foil for those driven by a desire to put events on this side of Durand line in context. Before ‘O21’ makes its official debut, the press were invited to Nueplex Cinemas (Karachi) to meet the cast.
Among them was Azaan Sami Khan – CEO, ‘One Motion Pictures’. It is his first undertaking as a producer. The mantle of executive producer is worn by Zeba Bakhtiar. This is not her first rodeo. She had tried her hand at filmmaking once before, but was forced to retreat. Her timing had been off. A film industry seen riding the crest of success of recent box office hits, is amenable to experimentation, and beckons to a new crop of filmmakers. An opportunity to take back narrative control seems to inspire the creators.
yet chivalrous military man was hailed for his comeback, and his casting as a disillusioned yet chivalrous ‘Paackistani’ field officer that places him in danger of being type-cast viewed with unease. Their concerns would be seen as premature, and press-walas were asked to reserve judgment, till after the official premier.
Previous films that sought to elevate Pakistan’s role in the GWOT fell into the trap of taking a RAW-centric route which invariably ends up absolving the domestic enemy of its crimes. One hopes the next one can venture further into the geo-political minefield, without having its objectivity questioned, and be able to critique, without having its patriotism doubted. ‘Oh 21’ is due out in early October 2014.
PR: Phegency (Pheby Haroon)
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