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Did you know Raqs-e-Bismil poster is an American painting rip-off?

We bring you the proof

SAMAA | - Posted: Apr 29, 2021 | Last Updated: 6 months ago
Posted: Apr 29, 2021 | Last Updated: 6 months ago

Photo: File

Bollywood filmmakers are known for notoriously copying posters of Hollywood movies. But who thought the drama serial Raqs-e-Bismil’s poster would turn out to be a rip-off of an American painting too?

The poster features main characters Moosa (Imran Ashraf) in his pure white suit seated on a pillow top stool and Zohra (Sarah Khan) at his feet with eyes downcast. An open door backdrops the subjects, opening to stone walls and stairs, trees and distant houses.

Photo: File

Now look at this painting by Greg Olsen. It is titled Forgiven and was listed on Fine Art America on October 3, 2012. According to artist’s description, the painting shows Prophet Isiah giving hope to and forgiving people who have lapsed into sin. 


The stark similarities between Forgiven and Raqs-e-Bismil, including the subjects’ positioning and the colours of their outfits, may be enough to infer that the poster is not original. In fact, the door in both pieces looks exactly the same.

Collage: SAMAA Digital

Greg describes Forgiven as a representation of burden resulting from one’s mistakes and poor decisions, leading to depression, sickness, sorrow and loss. The woman in the red is emblematic of these mistakes.

“Whatever the cause of our tears there is one waiting to wipe away our tears and make us whole,” Greg said.

The artist is known for his biblical art which he has exhibited in more than 20 countries. He was brought up in a farming community in the US state Idaho. The Spirit of Christmas, O Jerusalem and Worlds without Ends have made Greg a big name.

Raqs-e-Bismil has been written by novelist Hashim Nadeem. Eighteen episodes of the drama have been aired on HUM TV so far.

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