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Putting the cart before the horse?

‘Punjab­i Weddin­g Thrill­er’ may not have a full screen­play as yet but its soundt­rack nears comple­tion

Javed said his team is focused on story, script and characters. PHOTO: PUBLICITY

Javed said his team is focused on story, script and characters. PHOTO: PUBLICITY


If the filmmaking manual is to be followed, the background score and soundtrack come second to screenwriting. But it seems renowned music video and TV serial director Sohail Javed is in no mood to go by the books.

With his debut film Punjabi Wedding Thriller still in infancy, the team behind the movie is done with the soundtrack that will accompany it. Talking to The Express Tribune, Javed said the film, which is expected to go on the floors next year, already has a soundtrack that only needs finishing touches now. “The songwriting process started much earlier actually,” he said, adding that with ample time on his hands, he was able to loop in a large number of marquee names in the project. “Due to the extensive work with artists and music videos, it was inadvertent that the movie flows via its music.”

Imran Khalil is the man who is lending a hand with the task. Shazia Manzoor, Hadiqa Kiani, Sohail Abbas, Abbas Ali Khan and Khalil himself will feature on the album, he added. “I wouldn’t say Imran [Khalil] is the music producer … but yes, he is in the thick of affairs. All the musicians have been sharing their input with him.”

Hadiqa Kiani to feature on album

As has been the case with Pakistani films of the recent past, filmmakers tend to string together singles by multiple artists into a soundtrack. Javed, however, has a different route on his mind. “No artist is working in isolation. When the music is out, I am sure the audiences will see the difference. There is no randomly-inserted track on the album.”

Having earlier stated that the film will be in Punjabi, Javed said it would be incorrect to classify the songs as Punjabi tracks. “Songs are songs … I don’t believe in terming a track as Punjabi or anything else for that matter,” he maintained. “Our focus is on story, script and characters, not gimmicks. We feel our simplicity and honesty are our strength. The true essence of Punjab is in its rich culture and family values, which have been ignored and portrayed poorly since the 1980s,” he added.

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With seasoned lyricists such as Asim Raza and Akhtar Qayyum on board, Javed has envisioned a project that will portray local traditions and cultural history. Abbas Ali and Sohail himself will act as their understudy and also contribute to the lyrics. Folk music is a major component of the soundtrack’s feel.

Punjabi Wedding Thriller’s principal photography is expected to take place in Lahore and Karachi, while some of the filming will be carried out elsewhere. “We have only recently finalised the budget and the cast.” Javed seems to be in no rush to get done with his first-ever cinematic venture. “We are not in a hurry since we are not competing with anyone.”

Published in The Express Tribune, October 21st, 2015.

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