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Vancouver International South Asian Film Festival will close with Nardeep Khurmi’s Land of Gold

Nardeep Khurmi
Nardeep Khurmi's Land of Gold revolves around a first-generation Punjabi immigrant truck driver and an undocumented Mexican American girl. NardeepKhurmi.com photo.

There’s a surprising back story behind the closing film at this year’s Vancouver International South Asian Film Festival.

The writer, director, and star of Land of Gold, Nardeep Khurmi, financed it with an impressive videotaped sales pitch in 2021. This enabled him to win the Tribeca/AT&T Untold Stories Prize.

Along with the award came a $1-million production budget and a guarantee of a premiere at the 2022 Tribeca Film Festival. Actor Robert De Niro and his business partner, Jane Rosenthal, founded Tribeca. So to no one’s surprise, Land of Gold is generating lots of buzz.

Check out the pitch below.

Land of Gold is about a truck driver of Punjabi ancestry who comes across an undocumented Mexican American girl. He takes her to a Punjabi diner as he figures out what to do next.

Khurmi made the film, which is his first feature, at the Cherokee Nation’s studio and soundstage in Oklahoma. It later won honorable mention from the jury at the 2022 Bentonville Film Festival.

According to his biography, Khurmi’s “work spotlights underrepresented communities, and he splits his time working on thought-provoking, moving, socially relevant narratives and absurdist comedy pieces”.

Film festivals based in Denver, Philadelphia, St. Louis, Toronto, Honolulu, and Indianapolis have already screened Land of Gold.

The Vancouver International South Asian Film Festival will show it at 7:30 p.m. on Sunday (November 13) at Central Stage at Surrey City Hall.

Pancouver advises people to wear masks inside movie theatres because COVID-19 is most often transferred via the airborne route.

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Charlie Smith

Charlie Smith

Pancouver editor Charlie Smith has worked as a Vancouver journalist in print, radio, and television for more than three decades.

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We would like to acknowledge that we are gathered on the traditional and unceded territories of the Coast Salish peoples of the xʷməθkwəy̓əm (Musqueam), Skwxwú7mesh (Squamish), and Səl̓ílwətaɬ (Tsleil-Waututh) Nations. With this acknowledgement, we thank the Indigenous peoples who still live on and care for this land.