Pakistani filmmaker wins “The Best Direction” award for “Barefoot with Godfather of Soccer-Unwanted but Undaunted” from the 4th annual Global India International Film Festival, GIIFF (One of The Best Reviewed Festivals), held in Mumbai, India on, 4th February, 2022.
The football documentary has been awarded at the Tagore International Film Festival in December 2021.
Pakistani football documentary, Barefoot wins the “Best Direction” award from the 4th annual Global India International Film Festival, Mumbai, India – GIIFF is one of the best reviewed festivals in the world.
The sports documentary revolves around the lives of two former footballers and current soccer coaches from the North and South of Pakistan. Documentary director Khalid Hasan Khan said, “This is more of an interfaith and inter-class dialogue than a sports documentary, where footballers from the the Hindu, Christian and Zoroastrian communities, as well as the stories of soccer players from Pakistan’s underprivileged classes were captured.”
This documentary film spans football passion from Karachi to Bannu. The docu film’s director Khalid Hasan Khan says, “Bannu is the most strategic football frontier of Pakistan, where the borders of the tribal area merge with the dense urban population of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.”
The film shows how the Lyari footballers stayed undaunted with their football frenzy during the bloody Lyari gang war. In addition, the terrorist acts in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, in the past, could not quell the penchant for soccer, of young football players. Bannu football coach Saifullah Khan says, “extremism can be completely eradicated if football is promoted.”
Ahmed Jan, the former FIFA referee, narrated the tale in this film; “once the captain of Mohammedan Sporting Club, Dhaka, arrived on a set of a film, where Dilip Kumar was acting. The legendary Bollywood star stopped the shooting of the film Mughal Azam, to honor this sporting icon; who was Captain Muhammad Omar, from Harlem of Karachi, in Lyari.
The film includes a song, which depicts the multicultural essence of Pakistan, sung by Karachi-based songster, Master Nand Lal, whose mellifluous voice, touching poetry and melodic composition, was included in the short documentary to show the multi-faith and pluralistic diversity of Pakistan.
According to the film’s director, “Football is a sport that not only bridges the gap between people of different faiths and social classes, but also provides healthy entertainment to the new generation and eliminates intolerant attitudes in the society.”