The Pakistani Academy Selection Committee (PASC) has announced its official submission for Oscar consideration this year — In Flames by director Zarrar Kahn and producer Anam Abbas.
The psychological thriller is being nominated for the International Feature Oscar. This year, the final choice was between John and In Flames.
Premiering at the Cannes Directors’ Fortnight earlier this year, the film’s story unfolds in Karachi. Following the demise of their family’s head, a mother and her daughter’s fragile life gets disrupted by entities from their history, both tangible and spectral. Their bond becomes their only hope against the dark forces that loom over them.
Abbas produced the movie with Shant Joshi, Todd Brown, and Maxime Cottray as executive producers. The film is featured in XYZ’s New Visions lineup.
“As the chair of the Pakistani Academy Selection Committee, it is with immense pride and a deep sense of responsibility that we select and submit In Flames as Pakistan’s official entry for the International Feature category at the 96th Academy Awards,” said PASC Chairperson Mohammed Ali Naqvi in a statement.
“This selection not only underscores the film’s brilliance but also marks a pivotal moment in the evolving narrative of Pakistani cinema. In Flames is a testament to the boundless potential of Pakistani cinema on the global stage.”
“I’m deeply honoured that our film has been recognised by Pakistan’s Oscar committee. We’re currently self-distributing the film in Pakistan, as despite clearance from the local censor board, we were considered too controversial by local distributors — so we’re doing it ourselves. The response from Pakistani audiences has been rapturous — and we’re just grateful to be able to show the film in the city it was made in,” said Kahn.
“In Flames offers rare representation, both behind and in front of the camera, and through the resilience of our team the film continues to find its audience. In a year of incredible global cinema, In Flames has stood with giants, and found acclaim from Cannes, TIFF, Sitges, Busan to Red Sea.
“In Flames is an urgent call-to-action, exposing the brutality of the patriarchy and the power of community. In today’s divided world, it offers solace to the oppressed — and tells them that hope can never be extinguished.”
This year’s PASC jury includes actor Ahmed Ali Akbar, director Bilal Lashari, activist and author Fatima Bhutto, actor Fawad Khan, event manager Frieha Altaf, filmmaker Haya Fatima Iqbal, filmmaker Madeeha Syed, director Mehreen Jabbar, actor Nadia Afgan and director Saim Sadiq.
In Flames is currently running in cinemas.