Period dramas are all the rage now days, with Queen Charlotte becoming Netflix’s biggest hit this year, and more film adaptations like ‘Lady Chatterley’s Lover’, ‘Macbeth’ releasing in the last few years. But what we have yet to see, and are patiently waiting for, is Pakistani writers picking up their pen and writing a desi adaptation of a popular period book.
Because as we all know, there is literally no difference between societies during the Victorian era, and how women in Pakistan are treated today. We’re still told that marriage is our biggest accomplishment, restricted to our homes and only allowed to visit relatives rather than travel independently on our own.
So this idea flouted around the internet, when a twitter user Aimun asked how in the world has there not been a good Pakistani adaptation of Jane Austen’s popular novel ‘Persuasion’.
“So much discourse on Pakistani dramas but imagine a desi adaptation of Persuasion,” she wrote.
If you’re living under a rock and have poor reading taste, let us treat you to some culture. Persuasion revolves around a woman, Anne, who is in her late twenties and living with her family. When she was 18, she had rejected the marriage proposal of her true love, Frederick Wentworth, because of her family’s elitist assumptions that he wasn’t fit to marry into their family, a decision that breaks her heart and because of which she decides to remain single. But years later, when Wentworth becomes rich and comes back in town in search for a bride, both of them chose to avoid each other, yet cannot deny that they’re in love with each other.
And like the rest of Twitter, we are down with the idea, infact we are pitching in our own idea about who we feel should direct, write and act in this adaptation.
Marina Khan is the perfect choice for directing the project.
Why? Because Marina Khan knows how to play powerful, independent and strong-minded women from dramas like ‘Tanhaiyaan’ and ‘Tum Se Kehna Tha’. So who better than her to take on Jane Austen and give the book the justice it deserves?
For screen writing: Sarah Majeed
For someone who wrote such a compelling and gorgeous drama like ‘Fairy Tale’, we would be anticipating the project with glee if she decided to take on this drama and rewrite it for the Pakistani audience.
For our broody and lovelorn Wentworth, we think no one but Ahad Raza Mir can capture the character.
As for the leading lady, we think Dur-e-Fishan Saleem would capture the tenderness and warmth of Anne so well.
When it comes to Anne’s father, Sir Walter Elliot, who would capture his snobbery and entitled attitude better than Behroze Sabzwari?
As for Anne’s confidant and best friend, Lady Elliot, who helps her navigate coming out of her shell and becoming brave enough to go after what she wants, we think Saba Qamar would do this character justice.
As for the villain, William Elliot, who aspires to marry Anne in order to steal her wealth, Bilal Abbas would be a great choice.