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Encounters International Film Festival 2010

Posted by on Wednesday, December 22, 2010, 12:34
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Encounters International Film Festival 2010
Encounters International Film Festival 2010

Twenty two-year-old Ali Ahmed Brohi’s short film Plastic Dreams was among the 200 projects shortlisted for screenings at Encounters International Film Festival 2010. The festival, held in November this year in Bristol, UK, had over 1600 entries from 63 countries. Though Plastic Dreams did not win a prize, its screening was enough to boost the spirits of Brohi, a student of Computer Arts at PAF Karachi Institute of Economics and Technology, who is also running his own media based organisation, Media Voice.

The three-minute long Plastic Dreams tells the story of a young Pakistani girl living in a rural settlement, who dreams of playing with plastic toys that boys in the village get to play with in the streets. In Brohi’s words, “In Pakistani rural areas, a girl is put to work from a very tender age and their dreams and desires are overlooked.  They are discriminated against at every level, be it food, education, respect, leisure etc. But that’s not the case with the boys.”

What made you choose gender discrimination as the topic of your film?

I feel such subjects should be highlighted; we need to let go of customs which are not productive to society. That’s the message of the film. My future films will also be about our customs, traditions and religious interpretations.

How did your journey begin?

I have been into art since childhood. I used to draw and later on I was introduced to the computer. So instead of just sketching on paper, I started drawing, designing and editing videos on the computer. This led to me wanting to make my own video. So, one day my cousin and I got a digital camera from a friend, we shot a video at home. The result? Horrible! This was just the beginning though. I became really interested in filmmaking from there on.

Do you face any major problem when it comes to making a short-film in Pakistan and about Pakistan?

I haven’t faced any major problems till now, besides a few technical ones, which I think are a part of the process. I assume I may face problems in the near future, because of the nature of my films.

What were your expectations from Encounter Short Film Festival?

I had no idea, what was going to happen. I just wanted the message to be conveyed, I kept it pretty simple.

The selection of my film at Encounters Short film festival boosted my confidence. I will be sending it to a few other international film festivals in the hope that it is well received.

Finally, what’s in the pipeline?

Right now I am editing a documentary about honour killings. It’s one of my biggest projects thus far. Other than that I am preparing for two more projects.

One is based on the Madrassa system and the youth who study there. The third one is about the effects of climatic change on women; it revolves around a woman who lost her 5 children in the floods.

Achievements

* Short film screened at London International Documentary Festival.
* Winner at IMF International Youth Video Contest
* One of 15 participants from Asia to attend a filmmaking workshop in Thailand
* One of 30 participants to attend filmmaking workshop arranged by British High Commission, ECKOVA Productions and London International Documentary Festival

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