Should we put up Pathaan posters instead, asks Faysal Quraishi on Maria B’s criticism of Joyland poster in Kuch Ankahi

Should we put up Pathaan posters instead, asks Faysal Quraishi on Maria B’s criticism of Joyland poster in Kuch Ankahi

The actor questioned if the designer would prefer a poster of a Bollywood film "abusing the ISI" to be featured in the drama.
09 Feb, 2023

When Kuch Ankahi’s fourth episode aired on Jan 28 it caught everyone’s attention but not for reasons the show-runners likely predicted. A scene featuring Sajal Aly’s Aaliya and Qudsia Ali’s Tanya arguing over their sister Tanya’s marriage blew up not because of the dialogue, but the set design — it featured a poster of Pakistani film Joyland. The inclusion of Joyland’s poster enraged designer Maria B and Faysal Quraishi is tired of it.

Quraishi addressed her criticism of the poster’s inclusion and asked whether she would have preferred a poster of Shah Rukh Khan’s Pathaan instead.

He appeared on Kya Drama Hai show on 24 News HD on Tuesday where he, alongside Rubina Ashraf and Atiqa Odho, reviewed Kuch Ankahi’s fourth episode. As they broke down the almost 40-minute clip scene by scene, the host asked them about the designer’s take on the drama and the posters featured behind Aly in a brief scene.

Odho first justified the use of the posters and said Aly’s character is shown as an “outgoing, extroverted career-driven woman” right after which Quraishi cut her off and said the room is shared by Tanya, an aspiring filmmaker and deemed it fit to use film posters of Pakistani films. “These are posters of our own films, new films. Should we put Pathaan’s poster instead? A film where they are abusing ISI and you’re praising Shah Rukh Khan,” he said. The host then added that perhaps Maria B wouldn’t have had any issue with that since she seems to have a “problem” with Pakistani films.

Quraishi then added, “It’s okay if we put Shah Rukh Khan’s poster but it’s not okay if it’s a Pakistani film? You can have issues with the film, that’s a separate case, but it’s a Pakistani film. End of the argument.”

Odho came back to her point that if people are giving their opinion then it’s a great thing because it means they are up for a discussion and debate. “That’s the idea about evolution. The industry grows when people take interest and discuss it. So if someone has a problem, it’s their opinion and we should respect that, end of story. As far as the direction is concerned, expectations are very high from Nadeem [Baig]. I have worked with him and he’s a friend of mine. I feel like in this episode, some things were flatly directed, some scenes were very flat for me.”

In a now expired Instagram story, Maria B had called out the drama for “promoting” Joyland. Her criticism of the film circles back to initial concerns that were later allayed regarding the portrayal of transgender people in the film. The designer has long been a critic of the film and has made several uninformed remarks about transgender people.

Joyland is a film directed and written by Saim Sadiq and produced by Apoorva Guru Charan, Sarmad Sultan Khoosat and Lauren Mann. The film’s ensemble cast includes debutantes Junejo, Khan, and Farooq alongside some of Pakistan’s beloved and respected actors like Gilani, Sania Saeed, Sohail Sameer and Salmaan Peerzada.

Joyland has many achievements under its belt, from being the first ever Pakistani film at the Cannes Film Festival or the first to be considered for an Oscar. It has also won several awards.