British-Pakistani actor and Oscar winner Riz Ahmed has joined Saim Sadiq’s Joyland team as executive producer. He joined the ranks of Malala Yousafzai, who also serves as an executive producer for the film, and took to Instagram to announce that his production company Left Handed Films is now a part of the Joyland team as they inch towards Oscars official nominations.
On Thursday, Ahmed shared Joyland’s poster on Instagram and wrote, “We are so proud at Left Handed Films to be a part of Joyland. Our motto is ‘go left’ and Saim Sadiq’s unique film does just that. Joyland is ground-breaking. And it’s easy to get lost in all the ways that it is; the first Pakistani film at Cannes, the first award-winner, the first to be Oscar shortlisted, and a queer love story that has overcome multiple bans. But more important than any of the glass ceilings it smashes, is how this film so masterfully breaks our hearts.”
He called Sadiq’s style of filmmaking “understated and gut-wrenching” and his writing “consistently unexpected” because every scene from Joyland is, to him, elegantly composed yet bursting with raw performances.
“Joyland is one of the best films of the year, and against all odds of resources and marketing budgets, it’s been amazing to see festival juries, audiences, and critics shouting that from the rooftops,” Ahmed said.
Sadiq told Variety, “I am excited that Riz and Left Handed Films will be joining Joyland as EPs. Riz and his production company have a track record of exquisite taste and having them on board further affirms our belief in both the urgency and universality of Joyland.”
According to the publication, Ahmed is one of many executive producers on board, alongside Yousafzai, Ramin Bahrani, Jemima Khan, William Olsson, Jen Goyne Blake, Tiffany Boyle, Elsa Ramo, Oleg Dubson, Kathrin Lohmann, Hari Charana Prasad, Sukanya Puvvula and Owais Ahmed
On Wednesday, the Academy awards shared a photo of the 15 films that have advanced to the next round of voting in the International Feature Film category, including Sadiq’s Joyland.
They also announced that the official nominations for the 95th Academy Awards will be announced on Jan 24. We’re all hoping that Sadiq’s Joyland makes it through and brings the golden statuette home. The Academy Awards are scheduled to take place on March 12 in Los Angeles.