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Busan: Mostofa Sarwar Farooki Heats up ‘Holy Bakery’ (EXCLUSIVE)

BUSAN — Bangladeshi filmmaker Mostofa Sarwar Farooki, who is serving on the Busan Film Festival short film jury, has revealed plans for his next film.

“Holy Bakery” is based on incident in July 2016, where armed gunmen held up customers, mostly foreigners, at the Holey Artisan Bakery for 12 hours, before killing 20 of them and two of the bakery staff. Two police officers and five of the gunmen died in a shootout.

“Holy Bakery” will be a one-shot film. “It will be intimate and intense,” says Farooki. “In that one-shot I believe we will be able to explore the complexity of South Asian politics, the rise of the culture of hatred, the rise of intolerance, the rise of militancy and conflict between the modern Bangladesh and a small segment of those who are conservative.”

A cast will be set in place in early 2017 and principal photography will begin in March. Farooki’s production outfit Chabial will produce with other entities joining shortly.

Farooki is in post-production on “No Bed of Roses” (“Doob”), starring Irrfan Khan (“Inferno”), Nusrat Imroz Tisha (“Television”), Parno Mittra (“X: Past is Present) and Rokeya Prachi (“The Clay Bird”).

He is also producing “A Foolish Man” (“Apodartho”), directed by Abu Shahed Emon, whose “Jalal’s Story” was Bangladesh’s entry to the 2016 Oscars. The project has been selected for the National Film Development Corporation of India’s annual Film Bazaar co-production market in November. And “No Land’s Man,” an ambitious film set across five countries, will be next up.

“I love my past, but I am triggered by the potential of future. What I have done or what I am doing doesn’t trigger me much. Rather, I’m moved by what I am going to do. This is what keeps me busy with too many ideas and projects at the same time,” says Farooki.

Farooki is the most visible face of Bangladeshi cinema internationally. His “Television” won the grand jury prize at the Asia Pacific Screen awards and won a Muhr AsiaAfrica special mention at the Dubai international film festival in 2012. Ever since “Television” closed Busan in 2012, Bangladesh has seen an uptick in independent cinema.

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