Published: May 15, 2012, 12:00 am
When she accepted the award for “Best Film” at the Asian Film Festival in London in March 2012, Fatima Khan, producer of Bol, said, “I would like to dedicate this award to the youth of Pakistan. They are very talented people who are working relentlessly to promote a very positive image of Pakistan.”
The Best Film award was one of three honors presented to Bol at the prestigious London Asian Film Festival. It also received awards for Best Female Actor (Humaima Malik) and Best New Talent (Amr Kashmiri).
By all accounts, Bol has been a groundbreaking film in Pakistan and across much of Asia and beyond. Not only has Bol earned more than any other film in Pakistan’s history, and shown the world the true power of entertainment education, but it has spurred conversation about gender equity, family planning and maternal health among top policy makers in Pakistan.
Indeed, in speaking to the media following receipt of her award for Best Actress, Humaima Malik underscored the importance of the film, saying, “[Bol] is a very meaningful film. […] It features the real experiences of women. It’s an important film because the subject is so powerful.”
Bol was created by celebrated Pakistani director and writer, Shoaib Mansoor, and was co-produced by the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health Center for Communication Programs (JHU∙CCP) under the USAID-funded Pakistan Initiative for Mothers and Newborns (PAIMAN). PAIMAN was led by JSI Research & Training Institute, Inc. from 2004-2010 and reached more than 5.7 million women, families and health care providers, with activities to reduce Pakistan’s maternal and neonatal mortality and improve child health.