Ashvin Kumar’s Noor finalises Kickstarter funding

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Indian filmmaker Ashvin Kumar is set to start shooting Kashmir-set feature film Noor after raising funds through Kickstarter.

The project was one of eight selected by the Sundance Institute/Mumbai Mantra Lab in 2014. It was also awarded a development grant by the Asia Pacific Screen Academy (APSA).

Production will take place in the UK and Kashmir later this year. Roland Heap is producing through UK-based production outfit Alipur Films.

Kumar, whose credits include Oscar-nominated short The Little Terrorist, raised $105,000 for Noor through a Kickstarter campaign launched in January. Rewards for donors ranged from associate producer credits to small acting roles, meet and greets with Kumar at a New York screening, tickets to the premiere and signed memorabilia.

“We approached Kickstarter for funding as we want to make a film without being beholden to anyone else’s agendas, or having to compromise on our vision,” said Heap.

Based on true events, Noor tells the story of a teenage girl from Britain trying to solve the mystery of her father’s disappearance in Kashmir. Kumar is working with casting director Shakyra Dowling to find actors among the British Asian community.

“Kashmir has remained in the peripheries of western consciousness and in media darkness for far too long. Noor is our attempt to change that narrative,” said Kumar.

Kumar’s previous features include Road To Ladakh, starring Irrfan Khan, and documentaries Inshallah Kashmir and Inshallah Football. His back catalogue was recently acquired by Netflix.