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Hollywood writers help develop capacity of Pakistani film industry

By Afshan S. Khan
May 29, 2021

Islamabad : The US Mission to Pakistan invited renowned Hollywood writers Janet Batchler (writer for Batman Forever and Pompei), Irving Belateche (best-selling author, screenwriter, and professor of cinematic arts), and Donald Bohlinger (award-winning screenwriter and lecturer) to lead screenwriting workshops for Pakistani students.

The collaboration was part of the American Film Showcase (AFS), the premier American film diplomacy programme connecting American filmmakers with their counterparts in more than 40 countries.

The five-day online workshops were attended by film and mass communication students from universities across Pakistan, including the National College of Arts, Indus Valley School of Art & Architecture, Fatimah Jinnah Women University, University of Peshawar, and Gilgit University.

The workshops are part of the US Mission to Pakistan’s efforts to help develop the capacity of the film industry in Pakistan. "The U.S. Mission is proud to provide connections for Pakistani filmmakers with recognized American experts in the film industry,” said US Embassy Chargé d’affaires Angela P. Aggeler.

“By sharing stories and experiences through film, we can build mutual cooperation and understanding between our two countries."

Speaking about the workshops, US filmmaker Irving Belateche said: “Strengthening the voices of the next generation of filmmakers in Pakistan allows for Pakistan’s unique stories to be told. Film preserves and elevates the culture and personal narratives, and provides a platform for a diverse range of voices.”

AFS is a partnership between the US Department of State and the University of Southern California’s School of Cinematic Arts. Working with US Embassies, each year AFS sends American filmmakers and film experts around the world to hold screenings, master classes, workshops, and press engagements.