A short film about two brothers — one who is on the autism spectrum — explores the choices we make, shame, trauma, and brotherhood have just made it to one of the most prestigious film festivals in the world. It will be screened at the festival in September.
The film, titled Bhai, has been directed and written by Hamza Bangash. What’s interesting — and great — about the film is that the actor playing the brother on the autism spectrum identifies as differently-abled. His name is Ayan Javaid and Bhai marks his film debut.
Rarely do we see productions that cast differently-abled people to play differently-abled people in films. More often than not, the only representation we see of differently-abled people is through the lens and acting of people who are non-disabled.
Hamza Bangash, the director and writer of the film hopes that this film encourages Pakistan’s mainstream directors to offer more roles to people who are differently-abled as they are more than capable and can make films/cinema so much better through their nuanced performances and richly textured experiences.