Apple has acquired the global rights to Minhal Baig’s cross-cultural coming-of-age film “Hala” following its premiere during the 2019 Sundance Film Festival.
Written and directed by Baig, “Hala” follows seventeen-year old Hala, played by Geraldine Viswanathan (“Blockers”) as she navigates her senior year of high school and starts to develop feelings for her classmate, Jesse, played by Jack Kilmer (“Palo Alto”).
Raised in a conservative Muslim household by her mother, Eram (Purbi Joshi) and father, Zahid (Azad Khan), her growing feelings are at odds with her traditional upbringing. At the same time, she finds herself grappling with the knowledge of a secret that threatens to unravel her family.
Gabriel Luna (“Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.”) and Anna Chlumsky (“Veep”) round out the main cast.
Executive produced by Jada Pinkett Smith, “Hala” is expanded from a short film that Baig made in 2016. The script for the feature was named to the 2016 Black List.
The inclusion rider policy was applied during production of Minhal Baig’s “Hala.” The policy facilitated the hiring of women into many department head positions and 75 percent of critical below-the-line roles.
Hailing from Endeavor Content and Overbrook Entertainment, “Hala” is produced by Clarence Hammond, Jamal Watson and Minhal Baig, and executive produced by Jada Pinkett Smith, Jana Babatunde-Bey, Marsha Swinton, James Lassiter, Caleeb Pinkett, Ari Lubet and Aaron Carr.
Endeavor Content co-financed and sold the project.