Pakistan sends official entry to Oscars after 50 years

Updated 05 August 2013
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Pakistan sends official entry to Oscars after 50 years

KARACHI: Almost after a gap of five decades, Pakistan will send its official entry to the 86th Academy Awards under the foreign language film category.
However, the committee has not yet decided which film they will send to Oscars 2014.
The Best Foreign Language Film Award category was created in 1956 for non-English speaking film that is produced outside US.
Till date, Pakistan has submitted only two films — Akhtar Kardar’s “Jago Hua Savera” in 1959 and Khwaja Khurshid Anwar’s “Ghunghat” in 1963 — as the official entry to the Oscars. Well-known filmmakers, actors and writers will form the core selection committee which will decide the official entry.
Heading the committee are prominent celebrities including Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy, who is an Oscar award-winning Pakistani-Canadian documentary filmmaker, writer Mohsin Hamid (The Reluctant Fundamentalist), director Mehreen Jabbar (Ramchand Pakistani), actor Rahat Kazmi, filmmaker Akifa Mian, Samina Peerzada and arts academic Framji Minwalla, according to PTI.
“Pakistan has not officially submitted any films for the Academy Awards consideration in 50 years because the state has never taken film seriously, neither as a cultural art form nor as a valuable communal experience,” British-Pakistani director Hammad Khan said, according to various media reports.

“In all those years, Pakistan has been so preoccupied with coups, wars and religion that cinema has only been reduced to low entertainment by the powers-that-be. It is, of course, monumentally idiotic to ignore the power of cinema in the development of any nation’s narrative.”


Philippines’ Duterte pestered again as gecko stalls speech

Updated 20 September 2019

Philippines’ Duterte pestered again as gecko stalls speech

  • In a previous speech lambasting the Catholic clergy, a fly kept buzzing around him and landed on his forehead
  • While attacking the political opposiion during an election campaign, a big cockroach crawled up his shoulder and down his shirt

MANILA: Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte just keeps getting bugged during his public speeches.
A noisy gecko was the latest wildlife contributor to an address by Duterte, interrupting the leader on Thursday evening just as he launched another tirade at human rights groups critical of his bloody war on drugs.
The reptile’s persistence caused laugher in the crowd of mostly soldiers, causing Duterte stop mid-sentence, turn to his left and pause for a while to see what the off-camera commotion was.
“You brought a gecko here?” he asked an official sitting behind him, drawing laughs.
Geckos are common across Southeast Asia. The small lizard-like reptiles are known for their ability to produce various loud sounds, from barks to chirps, to communicate or when threatened.
While activists accuse Duterte of cowing his opponents into silence, reptiles and insects have no qualms about pestering him during his often hours-long, televised addresses.
A big cockroach crawled up his shoulder and down his shirt during a speech in May when he was lambasting an opposition party ahead of a national election. He joked the cockroach was its supporter.
Two months later, a fly kept buzzing around him and landing on his forehead, just as he was berating his rivals in the Catholic clergy. He said in jest that the fly was acting on their orders.