Chief Productions Sets Kashmiri Doc Pot of Gold


U.K. indie Chief Productions is producing the Kashmiri beekeeping documentary Pot of Gold in partnership with global humanitarian relief and development charity Human Appeal.

The doc, the first fully foreign film shot in the mountainous region of Pakistan’s Azad Kashmir, follows beekeeper Shakeel Khan, who has committed his life to learning about the nature of bees. His lifetime of work becomes a lifeline for the most vulnerable members of his community after the most destructive earthquake in the region’s history.

Khan and his fellow beekeepers find themselves stranded in the midst of environmental chaos again when Pakistan experiences its worst monsoon in decades. The impact of the disaster highlights the vulnerability of remote communities and the unjust nature of climate change impact.

The film is inspired by Human Appeal’s project to expand beekeeping in the remote area and reinstate the region’s biodiversity.

Pot of Gold will be presented at domestic and international film festivals, where it will be marketed for distribution. It is authored by Billy Offland and directed by Olivier Richomme. Colin Offland serves as executive producer, and Alan Hamilton is writer.

“It isn’t often that you come across such a poignant and distinctive story as this one,” said Colin Offland, CEO and executive producer at Chief Productions. “Human Appeal’s project in Kashmir has been revelatory, particularly in highlighting the delicate ecosystems of the natural world and the importance of locally-driven sustainable projects like these when facing an ongoing climate crisis. It has been an eye-opening and fulfilling experience to be welcomed as the first fully foreign production team in Kashmir, and we’re grateful for the team at Human Appeal for allowing us to bring this story to the screen.”

Owais Khan, deputy CEO of Human Appeal, added, “Committing this project to film, which seeks not only to reinstate this region’s biodiversity but also to give local communities a sustainable livelihood, is truly an amazing story. As is the fact this initiative has transformed the lives of the local community enabling farmers to sell over £1 million pounds worth of honey since the start of the initiative some nine years ago. Chief have been tremendous in applying their knowledge and craft to bringing Pot of Gold together and what we have seen so far is heart-stirring and a compelling narrative of the human relationship with nature.”