Mehreen Jabbar

Mehreen Jabbar (Urdu: م‍ﮩ‍رين جبار ) (b. 29 December 1971, is a Pakistani film and television director and producer based in New York City.[2] She is a daughter of the Pakistani media-person Javed Jabbar.[3] She is also the niece of Beo Zafar.

Mehreen Jabbar
Jabbar at the shoot of Ramchand Pakistani
Born (1971-12-29) 29 December 1971
Karachi, Sindh, Pakistan
OccupationTelevision producer, television director, film director
Years active1994–present
Parent(s)Javed Jabbar (father)
RelativesBeo Zafar (Khala)[1]
WebsiteOfficial website

Early life

Mehreen grew up around Pakistan's show business. Her father, Javed Jabbar has been a filmmaker, and a very successful ad man apart from being a former Pakistani senator and a cabinet minister. After receiving a BA degree from Saint Joseph's College in Karachi, Mehreen went to the US to study film and completed a two-year program at University of California Los Angeles in 1993, with a Film, Television and Video certificate. She returned to Pakistan, and directed and produced drama series/serials under the banner of TasVeer Productions, almost all of which were critically acclaimed by the Pakistani press.[4]


Mehreen is a Pakistani-American director who is a 20 year veteran of the industry, with a prolific career as Director/Producer of gritty, hard-hitting films and TV series for Pakistani and South Asian Television which have earned her both critical and commercial success. Mehreen has also made a number of narrative shorts that have been screened internationally in film festivals as well as on TV. Her award winning short films and TV dramas include ‘Daughters of the Late Colonel”, “Beauty Parlor”, “Doraha”, “Daam”, amongst others. In 2008 Mehreen directed her debut feature film ‘Ramchand Pakistani’ for which she was awarded the ‘Global Film Initiative Grant’. The film premiered in competition at the Tribeca Film Festival and continued a successful festival run. It was later released theatrically in Pakistan, India and the United Kingdom in 2008-09 to wide critical and audience acclaim. ‘Ramchand Pakistani’ was awarded the ‘Fipresci Prize’ by the ‘International Federation of Film Critics’, the ‘Audience Award’ at the ‘Fribourg Film Festival’, Switzerland and an ‘Honorable Mention’ by the 13th Annual Satyajit Ray Award at the London Film Festival. In 2010 Mehreen was invited to screen her film at the Museum of Modern Art, New York.

Her second feature film Dobara Phir Se which was shot in New York and Karachi had a successful theatrical release in Pakistan, the UK, USA and the UAE in December, 2016.

Mehreen has been a member of the National Board of Film Censors in Karachi, a founding member of the KaraFilm Festival in Karachi, Pakistan and a founder member of the NGO WAR (War Against Rape). In 2012 she was invited to the Maisha Film Lab in Uganda - a non-profit training lab founded by director Mira Nair to be a directing mentor. She is the recipient of several awards for her work and has served as a jury member in many local and international film festivals.

Ramchand Pakistani

Ramchand Pakistani was Jabbar's first feature-length film, which was released in Pakistan, India and the UK to wide critical and audience acclaim. The film premiered in the competition section of the Tribeca Film Festival in New York in 2008. It won the FIPRESCI PRIZE from the International Federation of Film Critics and received Honourable Mention by the 13th Annual Satyajit Ray Awards at the London Film Festival, 2008 as well as the Audience award at the Fribourg International Film Festival. The film recently had a week-long screening at the MOMA (Museum of Modern Art) in New York.

The film also won the popular Public Award (the People's Choice Award), presented on 21 March, the final night of the prestigious Fribourg International Film Festival in Switzerland.

Audience members viewed over 13 outstanding films from around the world, and Ramchand Pakistani secured the highest number of "First Preference" votes. Countries whose films were also featured in the main competition included India, Germany, China, France, Iran, Algeria, Brazil, Belgium, Mexico, Chile, Colombia and South Korea.

The Public Award at Fribourg includes a cash prize of 5,000 Swiss Francs for the Producer of the film. The award is sponsored by the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SIDA).

Director Mehreen Jabbar attended the five-day festival as a guest. She answered questions and comments from jam-packed audiences which warmly applauded the film at the end of each of its three screenings.

This is the fourth major international award won by Ramchand Pakistani since its release at international Festivals in 2008.



Year Title Language Notes
2008Ramchand Pakistani[5]Urdu
2013Dil Mera Dharkan TeriUrdu
2016Dobara Phir Se[5]Urdu
2016Lala Begum[5] UrduShort film
2017 Kasam Se Urdu Filming
2018 Dino Ki Dulhaniya[6] Urdu Telefilm
2018 Hum Chale Aaye[7][8] Urdu Telefilm

Noted television

Awards and nominations

  • Ramchand Pakistani wins FIPRESCI Award from the International Federation of Film Critics and receives Honourable mention by the 13th Annual Satyajit Ray Awards at the London Film Festival (2008)
  • Won – Indus Drama Awards (2004) Best Director for Harjai
  • Won – IndusVision Young Achievers Award (2002)
  • Won – Lux Style Awards (2002) Aur Zindagi Badalti Hai nominated for Best TV Series
  • Won – Kara Film Festival (2001) Best Director & Best medium-length Film for Daughters of the Late Colonel
  • Won – 9th Lux Style Awards (2010) Best TV Director for Doraha
  • Nominated – 10th Lux Style Awards (2011) Best TV Director for Daam
  • Won – Pakistan Media Award (2010) Best Drama – Satellite Malal
  • Nominated - Hum Awards (2012) Best Director for Mata-e-Jaan Hai Tu

Festival screenings

Beauty Parlor screened at:

  • Hong Kong International Film Festival
  • Pusan Film Festival, South Korea
  • San Francisco Asian American Film Festival, USA
  • Trikone Festival, USA
  • New Orleans Film Festival, USA
  • Toronto Inside Out Film Festival, Canada
  • Regent Park Film Festival, Canada
  • Leeds Film Festival, UK
  • Bite the Mango Festival, UK
  • Travelling Film Festival of the British Film Institute. UK
  • Screenings at Pioneer Theatre, and the Queens Museum of Art, New York .

Daughters of the Late Colonel screened at:

  • KaraFilm Festival, Pakistan

Ramchand Pakistani Official Selection at:

  • Tribeca Film Festival
  • Seattle International Film Festival
  • Osian Film Festival
  • Rhode Island International Film Festival
  • Pusan International Film Festival
  • London International Film Festival
  • South Asian International Film Festival
  • Third I Film Festival, San Francisco
  • Cairo International Film Festival
  • Dubai International Film Festival
  • Kerala Film Festival
  • Fribourg Film Festival

Lala Begum screened at:

  • Jagran Film Festival, Delhi, India
  • MISAAF Film Festival, Canada
  • Dallas South Asian Film Festival, USA
  • Washington DC South Asian Film Festival, USA (Winner, Best Story)

Dobara Phir Se screened at:

  • Chicago South Asian Film Festival, USA
  • Tasveer Seattle South Asian Film Festival, USA


  1. Hughes, Amani (17 March 2019). "Catching up with Beo Zafar". Home Lifestyle. Retrieved 27 October 2019.
  2. "New York Story, Karachi Style". The Wall Street Journal. 23 June 2011. Retrieved 18 March 2017.
  3., Interview with Mehreen Jabbar on The Express Tribune newspaper, 23 December 2012, Retrieved 19 March 2017
  4. "An evening with Mehreen Jabbar, her profile". T2F website. Retrieved 18 March 2017.
  5., Filmography of Mehreen Jabbar on IMDb website, Retrieved 18 March 2017
  6. NewsBytes. "Mehreen Jabbar's Dino Ki Dulhaniya to air on Eid ul Fitr". Retrieved 8 June 2018.
  7. Shabbir, Buraq. "Mehreen Jabbar returns to small screen with two Eid telefilms". Retrieved 22 June 2018.
  8. "Mehreen Jabbar, Mohammad Ahmad and Marina Khan: The M trio reunite". The Nation. 25 June 2017. Retrieved 22 June 2018.
  9., Profile of Mehreen Jabbar on website, Retrieved 19 March 2017
  10., 'Mehreen Jabbar talks Jackson Heights, and 'hulchal' in Pakistani cinema', Dawn newspaper, Published 21 October 2014, Retrieved 18 March 2017
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