Mira Nair’s The Reluctant Fundamentalist will open the 69th Venice Film Festival on August 29.
Produced by Lydia Dean Pilcher and presented by the Doha Film Institute, The Reluctant Fundamentalist has been adapted to the screen from a best-selling novel of same title. The fiction is available in 25 languages.
Nair – who won the Golden Lion in 2001 for her India-based and poignantly Indian story of Monsoon Wedding – will walk the Red Carpet on the Adriatic Sea washed island of Lido (just off mainland Venice) for the fifth time. Her Mississippi Masala competed in 1991 and Vanity Fair in 2004. Her 11.09.01, India, premiered in 2002 Outside Competition.
The Reluctant Fundamentalist, with Riz Ahmed, Kate Hudson, Kiefer Sutherland, Liev Schreiber, Martin Donovan, Om Puri, Shabana Azmi, Haluk Bilginer and Meesha Shafi playing variedly interesting roles, was shot in New York, Atlanta, Istanbul, Lahore and Delhi.
Nair’s latest creation is said to be a riveting political thriller about a young and ambitious Pakistani man who while chasing the American dream on Wall Street gets caught in a hostage crisis and finds himself torn between corporate success and the pull of his homeland.
The movie’s rich visual style, complemented by Declan Quinn’s cinematography, Michael Carlin’s production design and Arjun Bhasin’s costumes, is set to lilting Pakistani music by Michael Andrews. There is also an original hot number by Peter Gabriel.
Last year, Venice opened with George Clooney’s The Ides of March where the director plays a Democratic presidential candidate in a plot that highlights dirty American politics.
The Venice Film Festival ends on September 8.
(Gautaman Bhaskaran will be covering the Venice Film Festival this year)