'The Reluctant Fundamentalist' to open Venice festival

AFP, Monday 23 Jul 2012

The award-wining Indian film director Mira Nair will open the Venice film festival (29 August- 8 September) with her new film

The world premiere of Indian director Mira Nair's political thriller The Reluctant Fundamentalist based on a bestseller will open the Venice film festival next month, organisers said on Sunday.

The film tells the story of a Pakistani man chasing success on Wall Street who ultimately finds himself embroiled in a conflict between his American Dream, a hostage crisis, and the enduring call of his family's homeland.

The film by the award-winning Nair stars Riz Ahmed, Kate Hudson, Kiefer Sutherland and Liev Schreiber. The novel is by Pakistani author Mohsin Hamid.

"The festival's opening night will feature a film that provides much food for thought," festival director Alberto Barbera said in a statement.

"Mira Nair has made an exemplary film adaptation of a novel that deals with the topical issue of fundamentalisms of any kind or nature," he said.

Nair clinched the Venice film festival's Golden Lion award in 2001 for her Monsoon Wedding and also won international acclaim with her "Mississippi Masala".

"The Reluctant Fundamentalist" was shot in Atlanta, Istanbul, Lahore, New Delhi and New York and includes a new original song by Peter Gabriel.

It is partly produced and financed by the Doha Film Institute.

The film, which is screening out of competition, will be shown after the opening ceremony on August 29. The festival runs until September 8.

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