Cine Survival

The cinema industry in Pakistan has great potential.

By DR. SAIRA ASAD | September 2022

The cinema industry in Pakistan has never done justice to the country’s potential of talent. It has been handicapped from the beginning and most of its good talent migrated to India after the Partition. What was left mostly did not come up to the mark and very few good films were made.

The recent revival of the Pakistani cinema is due to the making of quality films over the last few years. Though the industry has faced ups and downs all through, today it is showing a willingness to adopt new developments. For a change, it has chosen to present meaningful, thoughtful, genuine and relatable stories that also contribute to their acceptance.

The Covid-19 restrictions have also affected cinema in Pakistan as well as around the world. During the pandemic, only 60 sites were operating with 154 screens all over the country. Today, the industry releases films not only in Pakistan but abroad as well. Pakistani actors are also seen working in Hollywood and India. The film, ‘Jawani Phir Nahi Aani 2’ generated Rs.70 crores ($5.75 million) and made its place as the highest-grossing Pakistani films made so far.

The size of the Pakistani cinema industry is not as large as it should have been. The limited film shows or no film shows during the pandemic and the ban on Indian content reduced the performance of Pakistani actors. It was observed that with the gradual shifting of cinema to Karachi under the banner of the ARY Films promoted growth with impressive films like ‘Bol’ and Waar’. The film ‘3 Bahadur’ with its two sequels was the first 3D computer-animated film that was praised and accepted by the audience. It showed the willingness of the film industry for embracing new technological developments.

Films like ‘Actor in Law’ highlighted the justice system and ‘Ho Mann Jahaan’ represented the age drama. These were relatable stories and were highly praised. This showed the audience’s maturity and interest in acceptance of genuine stories.

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The writer is a columnist and researcher, and Adjunct Asst. Prof. at Riphah International University, Islamabad. She can be reached at

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