Pakistan cinema owners anxious about India spat
Despite deep animosity between two nations Indian films are very popular in Pakistan and they get good response.
Despite an official ban on Indian films for a long time, people watch Indian films on pirated videos and DVDs for decades until the ban was lifted. The Pakistani media gives very good coverage of Indian films and TV stars.
In the rising tension after Mumbai terror attacks Pakistani gave a miss Indian films for a while, Pakistanis were back in cinema halls queueing up to watch Aamir Khan's much-talked-about Ghajini.
Attendance in halls screening Bollywood movies dropped by almost 75 per cent in the wake of tensions between the two countries, but it seems it is difficult for Pakistanis to resist an Indian flick, never mind the anti-India rhetoric.
Pakistani teenager Mohammed Salim joins the crowd waiting at one of Karachi's cinemas to see the blockbuster Indian thriller 'Ghajini' — Bollywood's biggest grossing movie ever.The action movie starring Indian actor Aamir Khan and based on the Hollywood film 'Memento' spins a complex tale of a man with amnesia who tattoos himself and takes Polaroid pictures to remember people and places.'I loved this movie, not just because it was made in India but because we don't produce such quality stuff here,' Salim said afterwards.Just a year ago, the screening would not have been possible, as Pakistan had barred films from its rival neighbour for more than 40 years.Lifting the ban helped revive Pakistan's suffering cinemas, luring film buffs away from televisions in their living rooms and into the movie houses.But cinema operators now fear that the spike in cross-border tensions in the wake of the Mumbai attacks could doom their businesses, especially after Indian Home Minister P. Chidambaram suggested business links could be suspended.'The entire industry is looking at fresh tensions between India and Pakistan with great worry. We are certainly anxious to see how the situation develops,' said Nadeem Mandviwala of Pakistan's association of film exhibitors.