documentary film, 2017
film dramaturg, narration co-writer
About the project
Abu is a feature-length documentary film about writer-director Arshad Khan’s difficult relationship as a gay man with his father, who adopted an increasingly conservative and intolerant firm of Islam towards the end of his life. The film is constructed almost entirely from found footage taken from Khan’s childhood in Lahore, Islamabad, and Toronto. I was brought on as a dramaturg to help structure the film’s narrative and write parts of the narration. We did this through interviews with Khan and his family, freewriting exercises, and storyboarding work.
The film premiered at the 2017 Los Angeles Film Festival and won the following awards:
WINNER Audience Award Florence River To River Indian Film Festival
WINNER Audience Award Image + Nation Montreal LGBTQI Film Festival
WINNER Jury Prize - TWIST Seattle Film Festival
WINNER Best Feature - Vancouver International South Asian Film Festival
WINNER Jury Prize - aGLIFF Austin LGBTQI Film Festival
Abu. Written and Directed by Arshad Khan. Narration by Arshad Khan and Matt Jones. Narration directed by Deepa Mehta. National Film Board of Canada. Feature-length documentary.