After Cakeâ€™s submission as Pakistanâ€™s official entry to Oscars this year, another Pakistani-Norwegian filmmaker Iram Haqâ€™s film â€“ What Will People Say â€“ has been selected at the 91st Academy Awards as an entry for best foreign language film.
What Will People SayÂ centers on the life of a 16-year-old girl Nisha (played by Maria Mozhdah) who faces numerous socio-cultural dissimilarities along her journey while also enduring a grim relationship with her parents. She is forced to leave her home in Norway to live with her extended family in Pakistan where she was asked to learn â€˜her own cultureâ€™. The cast includes Indian actors Adil Hussain, Sheebha Chaddha, Rohit Saraf and Ekavali Khanna.
According to a report in The News, Iram Haq considers telling a story to a wide audience a bigger feat than an award. â€œWhen I started making the film, the most important thing for me was to tell a story in an utmost honest manner. And as an individual, I strongly believe that art is never a competition,â€ she said.
â€œOf course, it is a big honour for me that my film has been chosen but I want to say that it is not possible to compete in art. Reaching out to people with a story is important,â€ she added.
The film is based on the filmmakerâ€™s own childhood. â€œMy parents are from Pakistan and they kidnapped me to Pakistan and I lived there for a year. So I knew that when I grow up I will tell this story in some way,â€ Iram told Scroll.in at a recent screening of the film organised by the Royal Norwegian Consulate General in Mumbai.
The film is available for streaming on Netflix.
Watch the trailer: