KARACHI: It is heartening to see that lots of movies are either being released or under production. Earlier, it was all about television but now it is all about films. Anyone who has a fresh movie idea but lacks resources to make it can approach us. These thoughts were expressed by Sultana Siddiqui of Hum TV channel and Hum Films at the press conference of their upcoming cinematic venture titled Zeher-e-Ishq at a hotel on Wednesday.

“The film is based on Maulana Rumi’s teachings and its central theme is love,” said director Khalid Khan, who is known to TV buffs for his dramas Sookhay Pattay, Anokha Bandhan and Bhar Day Jholi.

“The cast includes Pakistani and Turkish actors and its shooting will commence in mid-December and the spell will end in March. It is being shot in Urdu but will be dubbed in Turkish, Arabic, Persian and Russian,” said the director, speaking to Dawn on the sidelines of the presser.

He further added that Zeher-e-Ishq would be dubbed in Russian as there are many followers of Maulana Rumi in Russia. As for the cast, he insisted that “it would be a big, pleasant surprise”. When queried about the approximate budget, he was reluctant to divulge the figure but did say that he and his wife were financing the movie.

The Turkish Consul General in Karachi, Murat Onart, was also present at the press conference and said his government was happy to provide all the help required by the director. The director explained how the Turkish government had facilitated his team in locations and sets.

The film’s soundtrack has been completed and composed by Waqar Ali Khan, who is well known in the television industry for composing soundtracks for numerous serials. Sajjad Ali, Rahat Fateh Ali, Sunidhi Chauhan, Palak Muchhal of Aashiqui 2 fame and Mohammad Irfan Ali of Ek Villain are some of the featured singers. With seven songs in the film and lyrics penned by Ali Moeen and Sabir Zafar, the music composer termed it as a musical movie.

Mohammad Asif, another TV old hand, has written the script and Mirza Mehmood will be doing the cinematography.

Earlier, Badar Ikram, VP of Hum Films, said they will be the official distribution and media partners of the movie. “We were media partners for Na Maloom Afraad which was highly successful, and Bin Roye, which was our production, was released in 22 countries including Fiji.”

Published in Dawn, December 3rd, 2015

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