The film was due to release in Pakistan on 18 November. As per reports, Pakistan’s censor board issued a censor certificate to the movie on 17 August, for public viewing. But the decision was reversed later.
According to a report by Hindustan Times, the ministry said, “Written complaints were received that the film contains highly objectionable material which does not conform with the social values and moral standards of our society and is clearly repugnant to the norms of ‘decency and morality as laid down in Section 9 of the Motion Picture Ordinance, 1979.”
Filmmaker Saim Sadiq Reacts:
He wrote in his statement, “We — as a team — are gutted by this development but fully intend to raise our voice against the grave injustice. I am compelled to point out that this sudden U-turn by the Pakistan Ministry of Information and Broadcasting is absolutely unconstitutional and illegal. Our film got seen and certified by all three censor boards in August 2022. The 18th amendment in the Pakistani constitution gives all provinces the autonomy to make their own decision.”
“Yet the Ministry suddenly caved under pressure from a few extremist factions — who have not seen the film — and made a mockery of our federal censor board by rendering their decision irrelevant,” he added.
‘Joyland’ Actor Sarwat Gilani Reacts:
There’s a paid smear campaign doing rounds against #Joyland, a film that made history for Pakistani cinema, got passed by all censor boards but now authorities are caving into pressure from some malicious people who have not even seen the film. #ReleaseJoyland @MoIB_Official
— sarwat gilani (@sarwatgilani) November 12, 2022
#ReleaseJoyland ! There is no reason not to. Be proud of the work that our artists create not afraid! Give your own people the respect they get in foreign lands. Support us, stand by us and we as Pakistani artists will make this country proud! https://t.co/6jQizg0Xbx
— Sanam Saeed (@sanammodysaeed) November 13, 2022
Joyland is a film about a family that lives in Gawalmandi, Lahore.
It’s a film about human beings that exist around us in Pakistan.
It was filmed here – across real locations, with real people.
— Imran Ahmad Khan (@imranahmadkh) November 12, 2022
— Raza Ahmad Rumi (@Razarumi) November 13, 2022
— Shehzad Ghias Shaikh (@Shehzad89) November 13, 2022
— Aan Cheema (@aanasifcheema) November 12, 2022
— Nishat (@nishat218) November 13, 2022
People who actually saw the film for the purpose of finding something objectionable in it cleared it but some disco maulvi and a failed dress designer, who haven’t seen it managed to find it against Islam because of the IMDb synopsis (which isn’t that accurate)👏🏻 #ReleaseJoyland
— Rabia Ayub (@RabiaAyub9) November 12, 2022
The film was due to release on November 18, in nationwide cinemas.
The directorial debut of Saim Sadiq, Joyland stars includes Sania Saeed along with Ali Junejo, Aleena Khan, Sarwat Geelani, Rasti Faruq, Salman Pirzada, and Sohail Samir.
Joyland became the first Pakistani movie to be screened at the prestigious Cannes Film Festival, and it also made its way to the Toronto Film Festival.
The movie won the Cannes Queer Palm prize for best LGBT, “queer” or feminist-themed movie. The film also won the Jury Prize in the Un Certain Regard segment.On Friday, it won the Asia Pacific Screen