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Pashtowood (Pashto: پالېوډ) is the term for the film industry based in the city of Peshawar, the provincial capital of the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan.[1] It produces Pashto and Urdu language feature films.


Yousuf Khan Sher Bano (1971) was the first Pashto film made. It starred Badar Munir and Yasmin Khan. Pashto films are made independently and, as such, there is no official website for information about them.[2]

2003 onwards[edit]

Between 2000 and 2003, the Pashto film industry suffered a setback due to government intervention, which imposed restrictions on advertising Pashto movies. Since 2003, Pashto film producers have given opportunities to young actors such as Arbaz Khan, son of film star Asif Khan. Arbaz's first Pashto film, Meena Qurbani Ghuwari, was very successful in 2003. In 2004, after a series of unsuccessful movies, he starred in Niazbeen and Khybarey, with average performance at the box office. His next film, Ashnagharey, was profitable for its distributors in Peshawar, Mardan and Swat district.

In 2006, director Liaqat Ali Khan made a name for himself with Sabar Sha Zargiya starring Arbaz Khan, Jehangir Khan and Ajab Gul. In the same year Lag Dey Zra Ba Tapos Oka also performed well at the box office.

In March 2007, Arbaz Khan made his directorial début with Sta Mohabbat Zama Saza Shuwa, starring Arbaz Khan; Jehangir Khan, an Indian Army major; Asif Khan, a Pakistani Army colonel; Shah Jehan; Dilbar Munir; and Sidra Noor. The film was successful at the box office. Arbaz Khan's second film as director, Zre Mey Ta Oray Dey, was not so successful.

Liaqat Ali Khan's film Tiger, shot partly in Dubai, was relatively successful.

Hit films[edit]

Similarly Darrae Khyber, Adam Khan Durkhanai (produced by Shakil Ayub and directed by Aziz Tabassum), Musa Khan Gul Makai (hero was Asif Khan and heroine was Yasmin Khan), Bahadur Khan (hero was Humayun Qureshi), Ajab Khan Afridi, Zama Badan, Maghrur, Oarbal, Topak Zama Qanoon (produced by Aziz Tabassum), Dahqan (by legendary Pashto film director Muhammad Yousaf Bhatti). They made a big change in the history of Pashto films in Pakistan. Other big block busters were Shpunkey, Doraha, Bey Qasoor, Neemgray Dunya, Chagha, Nehley Pey, Dehla, Cochoan, and many more big hits (produced by Badar Munir), Baghi, Arman, Miranae Roar (Step-brother), Tarbooz, Iqrar, Angar, Zakhmoona, Navae au Nakriza (Bridal and Henna), Ujrati Qatil, Da Aoochea Khan, Prdang, Toofani Shappa, Bangri au Hathqardae, Ab-e-Hyat, Khulea Nave, Kufar au Islam, Da Karye Gorilla and many more are the Pashto hits from 1970 to 1985.


The future of the Pashto film industry seems to be bright as there are still some people who want to do something for the betterment of the industry. For instance, Habib Ullah Afridi, the director of HabibFilms Production, is going to start working on the new Blackmail Pakhtun and the director is expecting this film to be release this year 2013. HabibFilm recently[when?] made few hit short clips by the name of Clip1: Zama Mobile and Clip2: Gul Panra in Action. The director is working hard to make Hollywood-level Pashto films in future.

Pashtowood worldwide[edit]

PESHAWAR (PPI): Pashto films producers and directors on Tuesday demanded of the federal government to making arrangements of launching Pashto films in Afghanistan and Dubai, which they claimed would help to revive film industry. “Pashto films, which compared to Punjabi and Urdu production in 2006, have been successful on the box office and it gave maximum business to the Pakistan Film Industry however because of the limited circuit, producers are avoiding talking risk to maximize its budget” Pashto film producer and actor Asif Khan, Arbaz Khan and film maker Hajji Nadir told a joint news conference at Peshawar Press Club. Pashto films, they said were the only productions in 2006 that remained hit on box office and encouraged the producers to invest more in film making however government should take step to open Afghanistan and Dubai markets for releasing Pashto films, which could a give boost to ‘sinking business’ of the film making in Pakistan. On the eve of Eidul Azha, four Pashto, four Punjabi films and some Urdu films were released however except Pashto films, Punjabi and Urdu remained dead flop on the box office, film producers Asif Khan remarked saying if provincial government helped them with equipments and other facilities they would produce Pashto films inside the provincial capital and not go to Lahore for it. Asif Khan, who has been most successful Pashto actor, announced to re-functionalize his Production Company, CWI Production, in case his new Pashto film gained success on the circuit. “I am welling to re-start my CWI Production after 20 years if our new Pashto film “Sta Muhabat Zama Saza Shwa” attracts viewers’ attention. Arbaz Khan, who would be directing the film for the first time, said “Sta Muhabat Zama Saza Shwa’ would be new changes in Pashto film making and new face naming Amir Khan; a UK returned young man would be introduced in the film under his direction. Arbaz claimed that new Pashto films, despite its lowest budget are doing fine on the box office as except Majajen, neither Punjabi nor Urdu film competed Pashto films in business. “We need government patronage to produce films like Urbal, Didan and Dara-e-Khyber, the most hit movies of the past as government is paying nothing to film industry in return of 63% revenue Pakistan government generating of film business” he added. To a question he said co-production with India is not bad however it should be on parity basis and like Pakistani artists, Indian actors should work in Pakistani films. “I am not in favor of degrading our selves by acting in Indian films just as guest actors” he observed. — "Call to screen Pashto films in Afghanistan demanded," The Frontier Post





Music directors[edit]


  1. ^ "Bombs, boredom threaten Pakistan’s “Pashto” song-and-dance cinema". Dawn. Retrieved 2 June 2013. 
  2. ^ "History of Pasho films". Pakistan Film Magazine. Retrieved 22 October 2011. 

External links[edit]