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Scene Stealer

'The Kite Runner'

December 27, 2007|Ron Magid

In Afghanistan, kites are more than a hobby; they're a national sport. Afghan kites are flown on strings dipped in ground glass that sever opponents' lines during aerial dogfights.

So when director Marc Forster was preparing to film Khaled Hosseini's bestselling novel "The Kite Runner," he realized his young lead actors (Ahmad Khan Mahmoodzada as Hassan and Zekiria Ebrahimi as Amir) needed to fly a kite with total conviction.

Enter Basir Beria, a world fighter kite champion, who sells his own kites from his North Hollywood Smokehouse and Magazines shop. He told his students, "I always say, 'Shorto paneer -- I'm going to cut you like a cheese."

-- Ron Magid

For The Record
Los Angeles Times Friday, December 28, 2007 Home Edition Main News Part A Page 2 National Desk 1 inches; 29 words Type of Material: Correction
'Kite Runner' photo: In the Scene Stealer item in Thursday's Calendar section, a special-effects photo of an Afghan Fighter Kite should have been credited to Cafe FX / DreamWorks.

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