Pakistan’s Entertainment industry and the government

Abdullah Wahab Khan

Prime Minister Imran Khan not only portrayed ‘Dirilis Ertugrul’ as his favorite drama but also made it the favorite of the whole country, on the other side the former PM Nawaz Sharif’s favorite film is Gladiator. Former American President Donald Trump has praised Christopher Nolan and his movies in his speeches so many times, and there are so many other world leaders from all over the globe in every field who watch and praise the entertainment section of the media.

Entertainment section is a huge industry across the globe and this section makes billions of dollars every year. Even Online Selling giant Amazon sells contents through its Amazon Prime website, and the streaming giant Netflix is known to everyone.

The current Chief of Army Staff General Qamar Javed Bajwa once said “There used to be house full cinema halls, alongside mosques”. If there will be quality contents in the country of our culture, and demand, then why would the nation watch something else, mostly paid (Internet packages, Netflix, Amazon Prime, HBO etc.) while TV is free or cheap.

Everybody watches entertainment, but the difference is, if they were watching Pakistani contents either in cinema, or on TV censored and with a purpose and some messages according to the country’s demand, now they watch alien contents of no connection, with our culture, nationalism, and religion. The reasons are; not having quality contents of our own country, and that’s because; radicalism pushed our industry backside in the war of someone else. From the last two, three years the industry has done a powerful comeback in TV and cinema but there is still a lot to do.

The nation is busy watching contents of other countries, and that has a strong negative impact on their minds. We so often forget that news media is not the only medium of cultivation of information, but especially books, and the entertainment media section is the silent magic bullet effect as well, and these two are the important ones we consume the most. Through books, movies, and dramas, they play with our minds. Through mobile or laptop a person might be effected badly, before the parents know.

Radicalism has faced us with ignorance, which has produced domestic violence, and vulgarity, that’s unfortunately what we see every day in our society, then that’s what we want to see on TV and cinemas, and that’s what the directors and producers make, because that makes money, grabs viewers, and gets attention. After the comeback of the industry some movies went super doper hit, while dramas are blockbuster as always, in which some were appreciated by the whole nation like; Mere Paas Tum Ho, Ahd E Wafa, and now the third season of Khuda Aur Mohabbat is the most viewed ever, even the first episode have more than twenty millions of views on YouTube in just about two weeks. This is a really good sign for the industry, but most importantly the industry can be fixed only when the government will take it seriously.

The government really need to jump on to it and make it fix, as the Prime Minister had said that he will make quality contents alongside Turkey about Muslim culture, tradition, and customs. Just like we need an English language credible famous, and proper news channel, we also disparately need quality entertainment media contents. Remember that Pakistan is full of talent in this field, whether it is acting, direction, production, and post production or promotion.

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