Meet the New NYWIFT Member: Hania Chima

By Stephanie Okun 

Welcome, new NYWIFT member Hania Chima! We are so happy to introduce Hania, who has so much to offer our community. She is the producer and co-writer of Pakistan’s entry for the 2019 Oscars, Laal Kabootar, and co-founder of the production company Nehr Ghar Films. We’re thrilled to have her join New York Women in Film & Television and can’t wait to see what she does next.

Hania talked to us about getting to work with her childhood hero, writing and producing her first feature, and why the future is female.


NYWIFT member Hania Chima


Hania, what is your current position?

I am a writer and film producer from Pakistan. I moved to NYC last year and very recently got my US work permit! I am currently open and excitedly looking for work in this city that is bursting with diversity and inviting opportunities. Hit me up if you are looking for a collaborator for your projects!


Can you give us a brief overview of your career in media?

I Produced the crime-thriller feature film Laal Kabootar, which was Pakistan’s selection for the Oscars in 2019. Before that I worked on films from South Asia, like Irfan Khan’s Lunch Box and the director Shoaib Mansoor’s Bol. And during my undergraduate years at Harvard University, I did a minor in filmmaking.


What are three fun facts about you that others would not know just by looking at you?

I don’t understand Korean, but I know how to read it.

Since moving to New York, I have overcome my fear of mice.

I love solving Sudoku puzzles.


Madeeha Gauhar


What were the first influences in your life that led you to becoming a producer?

I was introduced to the world of storytelling at the age of 13 by the theatre activist and feminist from Pakistan, Madeeha Gauhar. Madeeha was a woman who could say that which everyone else was too afraid to, and she would say it loudly through her plays. Working with her in her Street Theatre Company (Ajoka) during my high school years, I was enamored by the power of storytelling and the effect it can leave on its audiences.

And that is where my journey started from. I wanted to tell stories. And I wanted to immortalize them in films.


Describe your most recent project and then your most favorite project as a producer.

As all filmmakers, there are several projects I am writing and developing at the moment, because we never know which one will get picked up and cross all the hurdles to finally see the light of day. But no matter how many projects I work on, Laal Kabootar will always be my first and my favorite project as a producer. There is so much I learnt on its sets, so many friendships made and so many hardships overcome, so much growth that you can only experience on your first film.



What attracted you to NYWIFT and how might the organization serve you?

A community of women in a world that has been for too long run by men, is what attracted me to the organization. By providing a platform to support and be supported by fellow women is the biggest service the organization offers.


What kind of contributions would you like to make to NYWIFT?

I would love to start a group with the NYWIFT members interested in South Asian films and stories.



What do you see moving forward for the future of women as media makers?

The future is female.

We now live in a world where we don’t need to go through elaborate distribution deals before a point of view can be put across. With access to social media and with the wide accessibility of cameras, our voices can be heard. And they are being heard, loud and clear.


Connect with Hania Chima on Instagram at @HaniaChima or email her at haniachima@gmail.com.


Stephanie Okun

Stephanie Okun Stephanie Okun is a screenwriter and recent grad from Wesleyan University. She is currently working on a feature film script set in the Kentucky horse racing world and another script that she started at Wesleyan. She is excited to join NYWIFT to make her first steps as a professional in the world of film and television.

View all posts by Stephanie Okun

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