19 November 2012 1:11 AM, PST | Thompson on Hollywood | See recent Thompson on Hollywood news »

Director Mira Nair was put in the unusual position of having to defend her film, 'The Reluctant Fundamentalist', from conflicting suggestions of pro- and anti-American bias at the film's press conference as opening-night film for the 4th Doha Tribeca Film Festival. One regional journalist wanted to know why Riz Ahmed's Changez, the Pakistani protagonist who switches from successful Wall Street trader to fundamentalist Muslim professor (and possible terrorist) in a post-9/11 world, repeats the phrase, "I love America"; another questioned whether the film's mistrustful ending ultimately serves as a condemnation of the U.S. Nair and Mohsin Hamid, the British-Pakistani author of the source novel who also co-wrote the screenplay, addressed both questions eloquently. Nair explained her determination to address "enforced" assumptions in the post-9/11 world of "what you might be" because of your skin colour, place of birth or religion. »

- Matt Mueller

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