Instep Today

Cake gets a thumbs-up from the media in UAE

Instep Today
By Sadiq Saleem
Wed, 03, 18

Asim Abbasi’s debut film, starring Sanam Saeed, Aamina Sheikh and Adnan Malik in principal roles, gets roaring applause in the UAE before heading to the United Kingdom for its world premiere.

Dubai: If you are somehow still unaware of the existence of upcoming Pakistani film Cake, then you are, in all likelihood, living a life away from social media. Directed by Asim Abbasi, Cake is all set to release later this month and promotions for the film are in full swing.

The cast including Sanam Saeed, Aamina Sheikh and Adnan Malik, is leaving no stone unturned when it comes to promoting their film, even though it is a rigorous process. Writing on his Instagram page while in Dubai, Adnan Malik revealed that “we are about 12 days into a 30 day cycle”.

It is also commendable how the team has partnered with the media in Dubai and taken all the right steps to endorse their film in this part of the world.

Sanam Saeed and Aamina Sheikh, who play sisters in Cake, have delivered fantastic performances.

In the past, Pakistani films released in the UAE have lacked the right level of marketing as Dubai, despite being a strong market for Pakistani cinema going by the number of overseas Pakistanis residing here, was being treated just as a transit spot where the stars would stop by for a few hours and meet one or two publishing houses. And that was it. Consequently, this treatment negatively contributed to the overall business of the film, especially in this region. But Cake is an exception. Not only has their promotional campaign been effective within Pakistan but during their promotional trip to the UAE, they engaged with the audience at several public forums including malls and partnered with the top radio stations. A special screening for the UAE media and influencers was also organized, followed by one-on-one interview sessions.

In my opinion, Cake is one of the best films to have emerged out of Pakistani cinema in a long time. Dynamics of intricate relationships portrayed through stellar performances by the two leading women will make you take pride in the potential of Pakistani artists that is palpable through this film. A special mention for Adnan Malik who has played a character that is unlike his public persona. He has played the role with a great deal of honesty.

As for the response to the film, it received a roaring applause from the entire UAE media when the stars arrived at the end of the screening. It is also interesting to note that other than myself, the entire UAE media is represented by the Indian community, who unanimously stated that not only are they in awe of Pakistani talent but that the treatment of Pakistani films is close to reality and not unnecessarily plagued with commercialism.

Manju Ramanan, Editor Filmfare and Femina Middle East was so touched by the film that she went up to Aamina Sheikh and Sanam Saeed and congratulated both on their stellar performances.

Speaking to Instep, Ramanan stated, “The film is real and puts strong women in the foreground. All three women protagonists are dynamic women who shoulder the responsibility of their own pain and find ways to deal with them. The film is an ode to the many daughters who look after their aged parents and families at the cost of their personal life. The mother, Sanam Saeed and Aamina Sheikh stun us with their effortless yet nuanced performances.”

The film will make you sit down and question your priorities and may just become the reason to realign and readjust the course of your lives. We have been requested not to share reviews until March 26 but I can assure you that the wait is definitely going to be worth it.

The Cake team is already in the United Kingdom for the world premiere of their film, which took place last night in London West End and the initial reports suggest that it has impressed folks. Cake releases across the UAE on the March 29 and across Pakistan on March 30. Watch out.

– Sadiq Saleem is a Dubai based entertainment journalist. He is also an Instep & Something Haute correspondent and can be contacted on his page fb/sidsaidso.