Television

Indo-Pak serial 'Ana' scheduled to air in August

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MUMBAI: The Indo-Pak relations angle. It started out as a somewhat unique experience during this year's Zee Cine Awards in Dubai. It gathered further steam during Ficci Frames 2004 when it was announced that cooperative efforts would extend to TV software and films.

One result of that effort is ready and awaiting its date with the small screen. Indo-Pak serial Ana (The Ego) is complete and the producers hope to launch it simultaneously in both countries.

Produced by Seventh Sky --- a broadcast and media management company in Pakistan formed by Humayun Saeed and Abdullah Kadwani --- Ana has been shot primarily in Dubai, Sharjah and Pakistan.

Ana is a 35-episode series written by Seema Ghazal and will be telecast on ARY channel in episodes of 20 minutes each in Pakistan. "The telecast in Pakistan would begin in about two months. We are looking at the prospect of airing the serial in India simultaneously and talks are on with Sahara and Sony. I would prefer a channel who would market my product very aggressively," said Humayun.

Ana stars Nausheen Ali Sardar (of Kkusum fame), Aamna Shariff (Kashish of Kahiin To Hoga), Kunika Lall (who re-entered Kittie Party recently), Sheela David (who has made an entry in the new Des Mein Niklla Hoga Chand) and Parikshat Sahni from India. While, Humayun Saeed, Talat Hussain, Munwar Saeed, Samina Peerzada, Javeria Abbasi, Javeria Jalil and Ahsan Khan will be the actors from across the border.

Sonu Nigam and Shreya Ghosal have lent their voice for the title song. While S Suleman will be directing the serial. The show is produced by Seventh Sky - a broadcast and media management company in Pakistan formed by Humayun Saeed and Abdullah Kadwani. The serial has been shot primarily in Dubai, Sharjah and Pakistan.

Speaking at a press conference at JW Marriott in Mumbai last evening, Humayun said, "I have been to India many times and seen quite a bit of Indian television. I thought that Nausheen and Aamna are two of the most beautiful and talented artistes India has. Hence, we cast them as our two heroines of the serial. Both have an equally powerful role."

While Aamna's role requires a lot of dancing skills (she plays a dancer), Nausheen's character would require some histrionics. Ana (The Ego) is the story of a man who is an autocrat and repents only after everyone in his family has left him in old age.

"Ana is a family drama," said Nausheen. "I play the role of this young girl Madeha who is from a humble background. She is wooed by the son (Humayun) of a business tycoon who leaves his father and his riches to marry her. There is also this track of the father-son relationship."

Talking about her sentimental attachment towards the serial and its cast Aamna said, "Nausheen started crying when the shooting was over. And I did not have the courage to say bye to everyone,otherwise even I would not have been able to hold back my tears."

Speaking to indiantelevision.com, Humayun said that he was very impressed with the gloss and the look which Indian serials had. "Indian serials have higher production values than our serials have," he said. "I am planning another serial titled Pehchan with Juhi Parmar (Kumkum- Pyara Sa Bandhan) in the lead, plus I might come in as a co-producer for a venture starring Divya Dutta which would probably have Sangeeta Ghosh too," he further added.

The media briefing was also attended by the likes of director Mahesh Bhatt (who is planning an Indo-Pak film) and Anil Sharma (special guests) who made the jingoistic Gadar- Ek Prem Katha.

Bhatt said that the medium of movies and television can go a long way in bridging the Indo-Pak gap. "There is nothing that aan cannot do if he wants to. The dreams may be lofty but let us give legs to those dreams," he said in his inimitable style.

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