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Cineplex Pictures has picked up the Canadian rights to Fawzia Mirza’s debut feature The Queen Of My Dreams, about an estranged mother and daughter coming of age in different eras, after a world premiere at the 2023 Toronto Film Festival.
Cineplex and partner Shut Up & Color will release the indie in early 2024 in theaters, with Amrit Kaur (The Sex Lives of College Girls), Nimra Bucha (Ms. Marvel) and Hamza Haq (Transplant) starring.
The film has Kaur playing Azra, a queer grad student on a trip to Pakistan facing the sudden death of her father, which sees her collide with her conservative Muslim mother Mariam (Bucha). She also plays the younger Mariam.
Azra soon finds herself on a Bollywood-inspired journey through memories, both real and imagined. Those flashbacks include her mother’s youth in Karachi, a Bolllywood-style romance with her eventual husband and Azra’s own youth in Canada.
The Canadian indie is produced by Jason Levangie, Andria Wilson Mirza and Marc Tetreault.
“Fawzia Mirza is an incredibly talented and exciting filmmaker and a wonderful representation of the future of Canadian film. The Queen Of My Dreams is the type of storytelling that Cineplex Pictures is actively looking for and we can’t wait to bring it to audiences across the country,” Brad LaDouceur, vp and general manager of Cineplex Pictures, said in a statement.
LevelK launched international sales for the film in Toronto before it next competes at the BFI London Film Festival in October.
“We’re overjoyed to be working with Cineplex Pictures to bring Fawzia’s debut feature to theaters across Canada. Their willingness to make this theatrically minded deal and collaborate with us to market the release widely, makes them an ideal partner for The Queen Of My Dreams,” added producer Levangie.
The distribution deal was negotiated by LaDouceur and Tim Smy of Cineplex Pictures and Levangie and Tetreault acting for Shut Up & Colour Pictures.
After a theatrical run, The Queen of My Dreams will also stream on Crave in Canada and the CBC picked up the second window broadcast rights. The film has financing from the Canada Media Fund, Telefilm Canada and Spark Features in the U.S. market.