The Pakistani LGBTQ+ film ‘Joyland,’ was banned nationwide in Pakistan, and executive producer Riz Ahmed spoke up about it via an Instagram story.
Ahmed reposted Malala Yousufzai’s article, which shows support for the movie amidst its ban controversy. Along with it, he wrote:
“You know it’s an important movie when
1) the film gets banned
2) when @malala is one of your producers.”
‘Joyland’ was initially approved by the censor board, however some pressures resulted to its nationwide release being banned. According to The News, “the ban was imposed on the film claiming that Joyland carried highly objectionable material.”
The movie’s entire team fought hard to lift the ban, and it was later on removed by the review committee of the censor board. ‘Joyland’ is directed by Saim Sadiq, and it is starring trans actress Alina Khan, Ali Junejo, Sarwat Gillani, Sania Saeed, and Rasti Farooqi in the lead roles.
Moreover the film’s plot reads:
“Haider (Ali Junejo) rushes his sister-in-law to the hospital, where she gives birth to a girl, devastating the extended family desperate for a baby boy. The brothers’ elderly father is still hopeful Haider and his wife, Mumtaz, despite their unorthodox relationship, will bring them their much-desired male heir. Everything changes, though, when Haider takes a job as a backup dancer at an erotic theater and falls in love with its beautiful transgender star Biba (Alina Khan).”
‘Joyland’ initially premiered at the 2022 Cannes Film Festival, where it won the Un Certain Regard Jury Prize, and it is set to be released in selected theaters in the US sometime in early 2023. In the meantime, you can watch the trailer here: