Pakistani 'God' set for India release


For the first time, a Pakistani film, "In the Name of God," will be released in India.

"This is a momentous occasion, and I am looking forward to the film's release in India," said Lahore, Pakistan-based director Shoaib Mansoor. "I am sure there is a lot of interest in this film."

The film is set for release in February by Mumbai-based Percept Picture Co.

Along with such Pakistani talent as model-turned-actress Iman Ali and actor Shan, "God" also stars veteran Indian actor Naseeruddin Shah in a key role as a liberal Muslim cleric. The cast also includes American actress Austin Marie Sayre.

The film was written, produced and directed by Mansoor and will be distributed by Independent Motion Pictures under the banner Geo Films. IMP holds the worldwide rights for "God" and is owned by the GEO TV network.

"God" received critical acclaim and boxoffice success in July in Pakistan and is seen as a milestone in reviving Pakistan's otherwise struggling film industry.

In December, the Bollywood football drama "Dhan Dhana Dhan Goal" became the first Indian film to see a day-and-date release in Pakistan (HR 11/23). Indian films have been officially banned in Pakistan since 1965, and Pakistani films also were never released in India.

"Goal" was released in Pakistan because it was officially a U.K. production produced by the London-based banner of Mumbai-based UTV Motion Pictures.