‘Forbidden’ world premiere in April; tells the story of honor killing in the West

‘Forbidden’ world premiere in April; tells the story of honor killing in the West

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Independent filmmaker Vibha Gulati’s short film ‘Forbidden’ will be holding its world premiere at the prestigious Julien Dubuque International Film Festival in Iowa April 26-29. Shortly after, the film’s New York premiere will be held at the NY Indian Film Festival May 7-12.

Starring Gulshan Grover, Salony Luthra, Gopal Divan, and Dhanish Karthik, ‘Forbidden’ sheds light on honor killings in the western world. 

‘Forbidden is inspired by the true story of my friend who was brutally murdered for being in love with someone her family did not approve of. This work is my tribute to this amazing woman who had the courage and the conviction to follow her heart and stand up to her family,’ New York based Gulati noted.

Forbidden is a short dramatic thriller that follows a Sikh woman named Jasleen, who ran away with her Muslim lover, Fahwaz, noted the  synopsis on the website.

Jasleen’s parents wanted her to marry within the Sikh community. They were shocked when she suddenly disappears. 

Jasleen and Fahwaz thought they had found happiness—but Jasleen’s family tracks the couple down and commit horrific acts in defense of their family honor…..

Gulati stated: ‘Earlier, I was under the misconception that only women who belonged to lower socio- economic backgrounds in developing countries were the victims of honor violence. However, after some extensive research, I learned I was wrong. Women from first world countries also face this societal evil, which is growing at an alarming rate. Moreover, sadly, one can belong to any religion, nationality, socio-economic status, and/or education level and still be a victim of this atrocity at the hands of their own family members. 

’The mission of this film is to end violence against women living outside of their native countries. In addition, it is to ignite a social change that will compel the legal system to take action against criminals who commit heinous crimes against women in the name of family honor.

‘Honor killings are acts of vengeance, usually death, committed by male family members against female family members, who are held to have brought dishonor upon the family.

A woman can be targeted by her family for a variety of reasons, including: dressing in a manner unacceptable to the family, wanting to terminate or prevent an arranged marriage, desiring to marry by her own choice, having a friend of a different culture or social group, having a profile on social media, engaging in a homosexual relationship, wanting a divorce, being raped, abducted or arrested or not playing by the rules of the household.

In most cases before a murder there is permanent bullying against the victim that may include battery, torture, mutilation, rape, or imprisonment within the home. Some victims are driven to suicide from the pressure of their families. The mere perception that a woman has behaved in a way that ‘dishonors’ her family is sufficient to trigger an attack on her life.’ 


Gulati is a Filmmaker with extensive experience as a film professional in the Indian motion picture industry. 
She embarked on her journey in filmmaking upon her official selection for the International Film and Media internship from Berkley University in association with Mumbai University in December 2005. During this intensive course, she assisted renowned Indian Film Director Raj Kumar Hirani on the highly successful feature film 'Laage Raho Munna Bhai.' Shortly after the internship, she enrolled at the New York Film Academy (NYFA) and graduated with a degree with a concentration in direction in May 2009. In addition, she completed a Screenwriting Degree at NYU and a Script Supervising specialization from UCLA. 
Since then, Gulati has worked with a number of Bollywood and Independent feature films including Raj Kumar Hirani's 'Laage Raho Munna Bhai,' Bedoprata Pain's Chittagong, Rohan Sippy's 'Nautanki Saala,'  Prashant Nair's 'Umrika,' Danis 'Tanovic's Tigers,' and many others.


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