Last week we reported that Saqib Malik’s big screen directorial debut, Baaji would have a special screening at the recently concluded 7th Mosaic International South Asian Film Festival (MISAFF) in Mississauga, Canada. The great news is that the film that was in competition and up for awards at the festival not only screened to a jam-packed crowd but also won accolades at the event.
Actor Ali Kazmi, who plays an important character in Baaji, told Instep that he lives in Toronto so of course he was there, while Saqib Malik especially flew down to Canada for the MISAFF 2019. “It’s the biggest South Asian Film Festival in North America and Baaji was screened to a packed, sold-out crowd,” he said, adding that the response was just amazing.
Speaking about the awards, Ali Kazmi revealed, “Baaji has won the Jury Prize, while veteran actor Nayyar Ijaz bagged the award for Best Supporting Actor.”
According to the actor, there were a lot of Indians and Pakistanis in attendance that had never seen Pakistani cinema before and were wowed by the resurgence and resurrection of film in Pakistan. Besides Saqib Malik and Ali Kazmi, Sabina Pasha and former Pakistani cricketer Shoaib Malik were also present at the event. Moreover, Mayor of Mississauga, Bonnie Crombie, Canadian filmmakers and South Asian filmmakers from around the globe including writer and director Hardik Mehta were spotted at the 7th Mosaic International South Asian Film Festival.
Since its release in June, Baaji, which features Meera Jee, Amna Ilyas and Osman Khalid among others, has generated rave reviews and is running successfully in local cinemas.