Tuesday, 29 April 2014

Waar, Zinda Bhaag, MHSA Dominate the 1st ARY Film Awards

The 1st ARY Film Awards 2014 were held in Karachi with a glitzy star-studded ceremony on the evening of April 27.

Waar stole the show with 12 awards, while Main Hoon Shahid Afridi and Zinda Bhaag were big winners with 8 and 5 awards respectively, with the acting and technical awards evenly distributed among the two films.

First time directing sensation Bilal Lashari was the most decorated nominee of the evening with 5 awards in Direction - Jury's Choice, Direction - Viewers Choice, Cinematography, Editing, and Special Effects categories.

The show was hosted by Shaan Shahid, Sarwat Gillani, Fahad Mustafa Tunio, Hamza Ali Abbasi and Ayesha Omer. The performers on the show included Saima, Noor, Amna Ilyas, Ahsan Khan, Ushna Shah, Urwa, Sheheryar Munnawar Siddiqui and even the legendary Babra Sharif.

Pakistani entertainment industry icons of the likes of Madame Sangeeta, Mustafa Qureshi, Anwer Maqsood and Syed Noor were there to support and celebrate the new-age of Pakistani cinema and handed out the awards to the winners.

The great part was that quite a few new films were introduced in the show which are going to be released this year, including Jalaibee and Shaan's Arth 2. Oscar Winner Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy and ARY CEO Salman Iqbal announced the first Pakistani animation feature film Bahadur as well.

Well, there was a screenwriter category after all, with unannounced nominees. And guess who won! Islamabad's very own creative son Osman Khalid Butt clinched the first ever ARY Film Awards Best Screenplay prize for "Siyaah".

Another new rising superstar from Islamabad, Hamza Ali Abbasi won 2 awards, including the Viewer's Choice Award for Best Supporting Actor and Best Debut for "Main Hoon Shahid Afridi".

In the tradition of the subcontinent film award shows, this one was separated into Viewer's Choice Awards and Jury's Choice Awards categories as well. The nominees for Technical Awards categories were not announced.

Very appropriately, veteran actor Nadeem was decorated with the Lifetime Achievement Award. International sensation and the global heart-throb Ali Zafar was also recognized with a Special Award for his contribution to the Pakistani cinema.

The following is the complete list of winners of ARY Film Awards.


Best Picture 

Main Hoon Shahid Afridi
Zinda Bhaag
Ishq Khuda

Best Director 

Bilal Lashari - Waar (WINNER) 
Meenu & Farjad - Zinda Bhaag 
Syed Ali Raza aka Osama - Main Hoon Shahid Afridi 
Azfar Jafri - Siyyah 
Shahzad Rafique - Ishq Khuda 

Best Actor (Male) 

Shaan Shahid - Waar (WINNER) 
Humayun Saeed - Main Hoon Shahid Afridi
Khurram Patras - Zinda Bhaag
Mohib Mirza - Lamha: Seedlings 
Ahsan Khan - Ishq Khuda 
Adnan Shah Tipu - Josh 

Best Actor (Female) 

Aisha Khan - Waar (WINNER) 
Amna Ilyas - Zinda Bhaag
Aamina Sheikh - Lamha: Seedlings
Mahnoor Baloch - Main Hoon Shahid Afridi  
Hareem Farooq - Siyyah 

Best Supporting Actor (Male)

Hamza Ali Abbasi - Main Hoon Shahid Afridi (WINNER) 
Gauhar Rasheed - Lamha: Seedlings
Salman Ahmed Khan - Zinda Bhaag
Ehtesham - Chambaili
Noman Habib - Main Hoon Shahid Afridi 

Best Supporting Actor (Female)

Meesha Shafi - Waar (WINNER) 
Naghma Begum - Zinda Bhaag
Naila Jafri - JOSH 
Ainy Jaffri - Main Hoon Shahid Afridi 
Mahnoor Usman - Siyyah 

Best Star Debut (Male)

Hamza Ali Abbasi - Main Hoon Shahid Afridi (WINNER)
Ali Azmat - Waar 
Khurram Patras - Zinda Bhaag
Ehtesham - Chambaili 
Noman Habib - Main Hoon Shahid Afridi 

Best Star Debut (Female)

Aisha Khan - Waar (WINNER) 
Amna Ilyas - Zinda Bhaag 
Aamina Sheikh - Lamha: Seedlings 
Maira Khan - Chambaili 
Ainy Jaffri - Main Hoon Shahid Afridi 

Best Performance in a Comic Role

Ismail Taara - Main Hoon Shahid Afridi (WINNER)
Zohib - Zinda Bhaag 

Best Performance in a Negative Role

Shamoon Abbasi - Waar (WINNER) 
Shafqat Cheema - Chambaili 
Javed Sheikh - Main Hoon Shahid Afridi 
Mahnoor Usman - Siyyah 
Naseeeruddin Shah - Zinda Bhaag 

Best Singer (Male)

Rahat Fateh Ali Khan - Zinda Bhaag (WINNER) 
Rahat Fateh Ali Khan - Main Hoon Shahid Afridi 
Shafqat Amanat Ali - Main Hoon Shahid Afridi 
Abrar ul Haq - Zinda Bhaag 
Umair Jaswal - Waar 

Best Singer (Female)

Abida Parveen - Ishq Khuda (WINNER) 
Sanam Marvi - Ishq Khuda
Neeti Wagh - Main Hoon Shahid Afridi 
Zoe Viccaji - Lamha: Seedlings 
Iqra Ali - Zinda Bhaag

Best Background Music

Kami-Shani - Main Hoon Shahid Afridi (WINNER) 
Sahir Ali Baggha - Zinda Bhaag 
Wajahat Attre - Ishq Khuda
Aamir Munnawar - Waar 
Najam Shiraz - Chambaili 

Best Independent Film

JOSH (Winner) 
Lamha: Seedlings



Best Picture 

Zinda Bhaag (WINNER)
Main Hoon Shahid Afridi
Ishq Khuda

Best Director 

Bilal Lashari - Waar (WINNER) 
Meenu & Farjad - Zinda Bhaag 
Syed Ali Raza - Main Hoon Shahid Afridi 
Azfar Jafri - Siyyah 
Shahzad Rafique - Ishq Khuda 

Best Actor (Male) 

Humayun Saeed - Main Hoon Shahid Afridi (WINNER) 
Khurram Patras - Zinda Bhaag
Mohib Mirza - Lamha: Seedlings 
Ahsan Khan - Ishq Khuda 
Adnan Shah Tipu - Josh 

Best Actor (Female) 

Amna Ilyas - Zinda Bhaag (WINNER) 
Aisha Khan - Waar 
Aamina Sheikh - Lamha: Seedlings
Mahnoor Baloch - Main Hoon Shahid Afridi  
Hareem Farooq - Siyyah 

TECHNICAL CATEGORIES (Unannounced Nominees) 

Best Screenplay
Osman Khalid Butt - Siyyah 

Best Dialogue
Wasay Chaudhary - Main Hoon Shahid Afridi

Best Story
Meenu & Farjad - Zinda Bhaag

Best Background Music
Sahir Ali Baggha - Zinda Bhaag 

Best Cinematography
Bilal Lashari - Waar 

Best Editing
Bilal Lashari - Waar 

Best Special Effects
Bilal Lashari - Waar 

Best Choreography
Pappu Samaraj - Main Hoon Shahid Afridi  

Best Makeup
Nabila - Main Hoon Shahid Afridi

Best Costume Design
Sara Ghandapur - Chambaili

Best Action
Hasan Waqar Rana - Waar


Special Award for Contribution to Pakistan Film Industry
Ali Zafar

Award for Lifetime Achievement


StudioBloop congratulates all the winners of the 1st ARY Film Awards!

Here is to a brilliant year for Pakistani cinema! 

Friday, 25 April 2014

Ali Asad Zaidi Ousted from Pakistan Idol in Dramatic Fashion

For those of who you missed the action last Sunday, Ali Asad Zaidi was eliminated in a heartbreaking anticlimax for the the teen sensation of the show.

The Karachi based contestant was sent off with an emotional montage of his journey in Pakistan Idol. For being a sport that he is, Ali Asad took the decision very gracefully and expressed his sorrow for missing the show.

However, many fans have not taken the news all that cheerfully. Ali Asad had undoubtedly developed a fan base and probably fairly enough, a lot of people believe he should have been in the finale, if not the winner.

Well, it all goes down to voting in the end. So Ali Asad's fans can console themselves by saying that he really did not get eliminated because of inferior talent.

Take a look for yourself.

Pakistan Idol 2013-14 - Episode 40 - 04 Top 3...
Ali Asad Zaidi's Elimination on Sunday - Source: Geo Entertainment 

Before the elimination round, Episode 39 aired on April 18, 2014 featured a Bhangra themed first round, with the appropriate appearance of guest judge Abrar-ul-Haq.

See the performances and be the judge for yourselves.

Pakistan Idol 2013-14 - Episode 39 - 03 Gala...
Ali Asad Zaidi's First Round Bhangra Performance - Source: Geo Entertainment 

Pakistan Idol 2013-14 - Episode 39 - 04 Gala...
Muhammad Shoaib's First Round Bhangra Performance - Source: Geo Entertainment 

Pakistan Idol 2013-14 - Episode 39 - 05 Gala...
Zamad Baig's First Round Bhangra Performance - Source: Geo Entertainment 

Ali Asad Zaidi's performance was clearly dominant here, considering how comfortable he is singing lively tunes. The performances of Zamad Baig and Muhammad Shoaib were well executed, but both their voices sounded out of sorts with the theme.

The second round of the performance night on Friday was all about Fuzon, a band known for their fusion of classic and rock. And Fuzon compositions mean some very difficult songs to sing.

Pakistan Idol 2013-14 - Episode 39 - 07 Gala...
Muhammad Shoaib's Second Round Fuzon Performance - Source: Geo Entertainment 

Muhammad Shoaib's performance on Fuzon's song "Ay Chand" was absolutely stunning, despite having erred momentarily. After his rather lackluster Bhangra performance, he really made a strong comeback, helping him become the first qualifier for the grand finale.

Pakistan Idol 2013-14 - Episode 39 - 08 Gala...
Zamad Baig's Second Round Fuzon Performance - Source: Geo Entertainment 

Zamad Baig might have been thanking his stars when he saw a Fuzon based theme for the performance night. The song "Soona Soona" was completely in line with his vocal talents. 

Pakistan Idol 2013-14 - Episode 39 - 09 Gala...
Ali Asad Zaidi's Second Round Fuzon Performance - Source: Geo Entertainment 

Ali Asad Zaidi's downfall was probably brought by his performance of Fuzon's song "Neend Na Aye", where he just might have trodden into unfamiliar territory. While he goes the extra mile with the effort, his strong, he is just not classically trained. At the same time, his performance is hardly ever terrible. 

However, Hadiqa's comment about his performance being the best of the show seemed to have not influenced people's opinions.

Despite Ali Asad's departure, there is a lot left in the show. Don't miss the performance round tomorrow night at 2100 HRS on Geo Entertainment for the final showdown between Muhammad Shoaib and Zamad Baig. 

The Grand Finale of Pakistan Idol will be aired on Geo Entertainment TV at 2100 HRS on Sunday, April 27, 2014. 

We can't wait to see who would eventually win the Pakistan Idol title. 

Friday, 18 April 2014

Pakistan Idol Final Three: Who's Your Pick?

The competition is down to the last three finalists with the elimination of contestant Kashif Ali in the Top 4 Final in Episode 38 last Friday.

The top three finalists that now remain are:

Zamad Baig

Zamad Baig is a native of Mandi Bahauddin and is a true Pakistan Idol big break story. He has earned quite a following through displaying his talents on the show. Zamad is probably the only contestant left who seems to have an inclination toward classical. His idol is the great Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan and he sang his timeless "Sanu Ik Pal Chain Na Aave" in the "Their Personal Idol" episode. His own maestro-like persona has certainly attracted attention and has added character to his powerful voice. But would his efforts be enough to outdo his rivals?

Muhammad Shoaib

Muhammad Shoaib is a journalist from Peshawar and is passionate about singing. Shoaib is down to earth, passionate and hard working. Used to working in some of the toughest settings in Pakistan, he is particularly enjoying the pampering that the Idol contestants get. His idol is Rahat Fateh Ali Khan and he sang "Mein Tenu Samjhanvaan Ki" in the "Their Personal Idol" Episode. He sings with passion alright, but does he have the kind of talent that is good enough to beat the other two contestants? 

Syed Ali Asad Zaidi

Syed Ali Asad Zaidi is the teen heartthrob of the show. Hailing from Karachi, Ali Asad is everything that you would want to see in a teen pop star. The News has even compared him to Zayn Malik for his resemblance with the British pop star. Ali Asad is young, fearless and energetic and is not afraid to take on any challenge. His personal idol is A. R. Rehman and he sang "Dil Se Re" in the "Their Personal Idol" Episode. Ali Asad is really enjoying the Pakistan Idol ride, but is he really good enough to clinch the crown?

For those who could not catch the action of the finals, it all started with strenuous, hilarious and sometimes even controversial auditions. Then, in Episode 19 airing on February 7, the 13 finalists were selected out of Top 24 semi-finalists.

Find out who is going to make it to the Grand finale and catch an exclusive performance by guest judge Abrar-ul-Haq and Fuzon on Geo Entertainment. 

Who are you rooting for? The youthful Ali Hasan Zaidi, the resilient Muhammad Shoaib or the folksy and talented Zamad Baig?

Wednesday, 16 April 2014

Islamabad Scores Several Nominations at the ARY Film Awards

The times they are a-changin'. At least for the Pakistani film industry.

Audiences don't need to be emotionally blackmailed into watching movies and we don't even have to feel guilty about watching Pakistani films any more. 

As a matter of fact, our films are now winning awards at international film festivals. Who could have even imagined that just a few years back.

The upcoming ARY Film Awards is a great initiative to recognize the achievements in Pakistani film scene last year.

2013 was an explosive year for Pakistani film with the likes of Zinda Bhaag, Waar, Chambaili, Main Hoon Shahid Afridi, Josh, Seedlings: Lamha and Siyyah. Waar certainly brought flocks of audiences to the theaters, but no matter which film you consider, the quality speaks for itself.

The age of terrible Lollywood prints is apparently finally over. Perhaps, the inexpensive digital film-making is what the budding filmmakers were waiting for.

And guess what, Islamabad did not do a bad job at all; it's not just about our artists and performers in Karachi and Lahore anymore.  

With the prominent Islamabad based actor Hamza Ali Abbasi scoring multiple acting nominations, and Islamabad theater star Hareem Farooq getting nominated for Best Actress in a Leading Role against veterans like Mahnoor Baloch and Amina Sheikh, these young artists have certainly put Islamabad on the entertainment industry map!

Hamza's collaborator from Mudhouse and the Golden Doll, the Lahore based Gauhar Rasheed has won a nomination for his part in Seedlings: Lamha. Yes, it's the same film that premiered in the New York Film Festival with the stunning Amina Sheikh earning the prize for Best Actress in a Leading Role.

An exclusively Islamabad based team worked on the film "Siyyah", which is nominated for Best Film. The minor actor in the film Mahnoor Usman won two acting nominations for the same role, which sort of reminds me of The Exorcist. Another prominent Islamabad artist Osman Khalid Butt ( @AClockworkObi ) wrote the screenplay for the film.

Which reminds us of the fact that no screenwriters were nominated in the ARY Film Awards. I wish our media groups would realize how important this aspect of filmmaking is. But well, I guess, our film industry would have to evolve a few decades further before people realize that.

StudioBloop congratulates all the nominees of ARY Film Awards, and especially Hamza Ali Abbasi, Hareem Farooq, Umair Jaswaal, Azfar Jafri and the entire cast and crew of the indie film "Siyyah". 

Click here to check the complete nomination list. By the way, you have the chance to vote for your favorite nominees on the official website.

You can also follow the ARY FIlm Awards facebook page here

The ARY Film Awards will be held on Sunday, April 27, 2014. 

Sunday, 6 April 2014

Catch the Just Released Official Extended Trailer for the Godzilla Sequel

Hey bloopies, in case you didn't know, Godzilla is coming back to theater screens this year with a giant and deafening thump.

And as always, StudioBloop is excited to bring you the first sneak peek into this exciting film.

And if you are not interested yet, Godzilla (2014) is no low profile flick. The film features a star studded cast, starring the Breaking Bad maestro Bryan Cranston, Academy Award nominated actress Sally Hawkins (Blue Jasmine), Juliette Binochet (The English Patient), David Strathairn (The Bourne Ultimatum) and Ken Wattanabe (Inception, The Last Samurai).

The cast also includes Elizabeth Olsen and Aaron-Taylor Johnson.

And don't worry you may be spared the usual disaster antics of Roland Emmerich, the director of the original 1998 Godzilla version, as Gareth Edwards (Monsters) is directing the sequel.

The film will be released in the United States on May 16, 2014.

Watch this space to find out the release date for Pakistan.

But for now, indulge in the first look into the new Godzilla experience. You may have caught the official trailer before, but the new extended trailer featuring Bryan Cranston really offers you the taste of things to come. And the movie looks really cool this time around. 

Just don't get too scared yet.