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Saim Sadiq’s Joyland has officially etched itself into Cannes history. The film is not only the first Pakistani competitive entry in Festival de Cannes, it is also bringing two prizes home. During the award ceremony yesterday, Joyland received the Jury Prize in the Un Certain Regard category and the Prix Queer Palm award. One of the central characters in the film is a transwoman, played by real life transwoman Alina Khan. Jury member Catherine Corsini stated that, “Joyland will echo across the world … We were blown away by this film.”



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Directed and written by Saim Sadiq and co-produced by Sarmad Khoosat, Joyland stars Alina Khan and Ali Junejo as leading roles in a story about unconventional love. The film received a standing ovation at its premiere in Cannes, which was followed by overwhelmingly positive reviews in international publications.

Over the past week, the Joyland cast and crew, which includes heavyweights Sarwat Gilani and Sania Saeed, have captured the hearts of Pakistani audiences.



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We have all watched with pride and awe as the team took to the red carpet, representing the very best of Pakistani cinema. While a release date for Pakistan has not yet been announced, this film has already won many fans in its home country and one is hopefully that the film, which aims to create a culture of empathy for extraordinary individuals, will be approved for release in its country of origin.


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