ISLAMABAD, Jan 24: A weeklong film festival at the National Art Gallery, 'Be Pakistani See Pakistani,' attempts to revive both the film industry and a cinema-going culture in Pakistan with screenings of classic and modern movies.

At a press conference at the festival's opening on Thursday, Tauqir Nasir, Director of the Pakistan National Council of Arts, described the event as 'a small effort towards the revival of Pakistani cinema. Our goal is to attract people especially younger ones back to Pakistani movies.'

As part of this effort, he added, the festival was completely free and the screenings open to anyone who was interested. No producers or actors from the film industry, however, came to attend the opening.

Some had wondered beforehand over the suitability of the NAG's auditorium for screening films, and Mr. Nasir acknowledged those arguments, saying, 'It is sad that there are no cinemas in the capital.' Nonetheless, he pointed out that the auditorium has previously hosted screenings of films such as Jinnah and Khuda ke Liye, and that it would be a suitable venue for the festival as well.

In its effort to attract new audiences, the Be Pakistani See Pakistani festival is screening modern films and drawing from the classical canon of Pakistani cinema.

The festival's opening film on Thursday night was 1980's Ik Gunah Aur Sahi, and a screening of Heer Ranjha, from 1970, has also been scheduled for Sunday. Other planned screenings include Muhobattan Sachiyaan, Koee Tujh Sa Kahan, and Ye Dil Aap Ka Hua.

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