China is set to release the first Pakistani film in its theatres in almost 40 years this November, as Beijing seeks to strengthen people to people relations with Islamabad.
The military action film, Parwaaz Hai Junoon, will release in Chinese theatres on 13 November, ahead of the celebrations of the 70th anniversary of Sino-Pakistani diplomatic relations in 2021.
The film, which has been promoted as a “tribute to the Pakistan Air Froce” is a tale of young aspiring pilots who become best fighter pilots in Pakistan.
The theme of the movie centres around two Pakistani military cadets whose biggest ambition in life is to fly JF-17 fighter jets. JF-17 jets, considered an alternative to the American F-16, have been jointly developed by China and Pakistan.
The 2018 movie is the fifth highest-grossing film in Pakistan. However, the film was not able to wow foreign audiences including those of Australia, the U.K., or the Emirates, grossing just $261,000 so far overseas.
China has injected billions in Pakistan in recent years, providing loans, financial assistance, investing in hydro-power projects and even providing help during the pandemic. However, the cinematic ties between the two remain subdued.
This has come at a time when India's relationship with China has trended downhill due to a months-long border standoff in the Ladakh region. The armies of the two countries stand in close proximity, engaging in skirmishes from time to time.