Actors Fawad Khan and Sanam Saeed’s web series, titled Barzakh, will premiere at the Series Mania festival this year. It is the only selection from South Asia that will be screened at the event in France in March. A Zindagi original, the series is helmed by Asim Abbasi and produced by Shailja Kejriwal
The web series will be screened as part of the International Panorama line-up, a 12-title competitive section. It is also nominated in several categories such as Best Series, Best Director, Best Actress, and Best Actor as well as the Student Jury award and the Audience award.
In Barzakh, Fawad plays the role of a single parent, charming but ridden with guilt for what he has lost. Sanam plays the central female character who is mysterious as well as compassionate. Shot in Hunza Valley in Pakistan, Barzakh blends together magical realism and supernatural fantasy within a family reunion setting and deals with themes of love, loss, and reconciliation
Talking about the selection, Asim said, “At its core, Barzakh is a family drama framed within a world of supernatural beings and other worldly events. The genesis of the story stemmed from a personal loss and the fears that came with it, making me realise that love is indeed eternal and nudging me to write a story about it. The selection of Barzakh at the Series Mania is such a momentous yet humbling occasion for all of us, not only because it’s a show that’s so close to my heart but also because the selection is such a strong validation of our belief in this story which is now finding its way amongst the best in the world.”
Shailja said, “This series was conceptualised during the pandemic when all pre-defined notions of love, life, death and beyond were going through a seismic shift. Online work, mourning and celebrations had led to a sort of haze and confusion about what was real. Here lay the genesis of the show which is essentially a family reunion, where the living and the dead are all invited.
“Set in the Hunza valley with its myths and legends, Asim Abbasi’s quirky, funny, deeply philosophical and layered writing, a dollop of magic realism and bringing Fawad Khan back…all added up to a show that needed to be made. I’m very thrilled as Barzakh not only finds its title, but also becomes the only series from our region to make it to the Series Mania Festival. We feel its selection at the festival is the perfect first step on the global journey the series is set to embark on,” added Shailja.