Norwegian director Iram Haq making a film about her kidnapping experience

The Norwegian director Iram Haq, known for her previous film I am Yours, is basing her new film on a personal experience, Cineuropa reports.

Titled What Will People Say, the film follows 15-year-old Nisha, who lives a double life with her parents in Norway. At home, she follows Pakistani traditions and values, but outside she lives like any typical Norwegian teenager. One day, Nisha’s father finds her in bed with her boyfriend and, filled with rage and shame, her parents take her home to Pakistan.

The film is based on the director’s real-life experience when she was fourteen and her own parents kidnapped her and forced her to live for a year and a half in Pakistan. The film aims to be an impossible love story between two parents and their child and has no happy ending, as the culture gap between the two countries is so wide.

What Will People Say is currently being shot in Sweden. The film is produced by Maria Ekerhovd of Mer Film as well as Lizette Jonjic and Madeleine Ekman of Zentropa Sweden, Swedish regional film centre Film Väst and Germany’s Rohfilm.

Photo: Maria Estanegzai (© Mer Film)


Emma Vestrheim

Emma Vestrheim is the editor-in-chief of Cinema Scandinavia. Originally from Australia, she is now based in Bergen, Norway, and attends major Nordic film festivals to conduct interviews and review new films.