The screenings are followed by a talk with the director, Arafat Mazhar.
Shehr-e-Tabassum (City of Smile)
Director: Arafat Mazhar, Pakistan 2020, 9 min., OmeU
The year is 2071. Pakistan's Great Leader has transitioned the country into an era of peace, stability, and prosperity after a civil war which lasted three decades. There has been no war or violence in almost twenty years. The cost for this new-found peace: constant surveillance, and a world in which the only expression citizens are allowed is - a smile.
Director: Arafat Mazhar, Pakistan, 2020, 5 min., OmeU
Follow a 12 year-old boy as he navigates an unnamed city in a Muslim country, addicted to crowdsourcing fatwas (Islamic legal opinions) of death.
Arafat Mazhar is a researcher and civil society activist from Pakistan. He is the founder of Shehri, a citizen's NGO, and the head of Puffball Studios, an animation and design studio. Arafat first made his foray into animation by creating short online videos promoting civic and legal literacy, which lead to the creation of his own studio. Puffbal debuted in February 2020 with Pakistan's first-ever animated cyberpunk short film.