KARACHI: “Zindagi Tamasha” been selected as the first full-length Pakistani film to be released on TikTok, the platform confirmed on Tuesday, describing the development as a “milestone” in the country’s entertainment landscape. 

The 2019 movie which translates into “Circus of Life” in Urdu, was directed by acclaimed Pakistani actor, director and producer Sarmad Khoosat. The film’s protagonist is a male religious devout who is criticized by members of the society for loving to dance effeminately. The film explores the prevalent gender roles in Pakistani society. 

The controversial film garnered international acclaim, winning prestigious awards including the Kim Ji-Seok Award at the Busan International Film Festival, and the Snow Leopard Awards for Best Film at the 6th Asian World Film Festival in Los Angeles. Zindagi Tamasha was also officially selected as Pakistan’s submission for the 93rd Academy Awards.

“TikTok has announced a groundbreaking partnership with Khoosat Films led by the director Sarmad Khoosat,” the social media platform said in a press release. “Zindagi Tamasha becomes the first full-length movie to be released on the short-form video platform.”

TikTok said the partnership means it would be designated as the film’s official entertainment partner, adding that it would be divided into 12-15 segments with each one over a minute long. However, it did not specify a date for when the film would premiere on the video platform. 

“All content related to the movie will be found under the hashtag #ZindagiTamasha on TikTok, making it easy for users to discover and engage with the content,” the platform said. 

It said the movie’s release on TikTok will be accompanied by exclusive content from Khoosat and the film’s leading actors, further enriching the user experience.

“Our film inspires kindness, promotes tolerance, and encourages peace,” Khoosat was quoted as saying by TikTok. “I’m thrilled it will be the first Pakistani film officially released on TikTok and we cannot wait for the platform’s vibrant global community to enjoy the movie.”

Head of Content Operations and Marketing for Pakistan at TikTok, Saif Mujahid, said the video platform was excited to partner with Khoosat Films.

“At TikTok, we are committed to supporting diverse and authentic storytelling, and we look forward to showcasing the best of Pakistani cinema with Khoosat Films,” he said. “Our in-app activations will offer users innovative ways to engage with the film, and we eagerly anticipate the community’s reaction to this much-anticipated release.”