EXCLUSIVE: Sunny Pawar, the little, eight year-old Indian boy who plays the young Saroo in Academy hopeful Lion and whom audiences have seemingly fallen in love with the way they did last year with Jacob Tremblay in Room, has finally been cleared to enter the United States after initially being denied a VISA.
The move comes after The Weinstein Company, which is distributing Lion, appealed to officials at the Department of Homeland Security and Customs and Border Protection which granted passage for Pawar and his father Dilip Pawar. Lion marks Pawar’s screen debut.
The two have now been granted entrance from India in time to attend the Nov. 16th premiere of the film in New York alongside co-stars Dev Patel, Rooney Mara and Nicole Kidman. And, they will be in L.A. earlier to to take part in a whirlwind pre-Oscar campaign to help promote the movie.
Pawar co-stars as the little boy who gets separated from his family and is adopted by an Australian couple. As an adult (portrayed by Patel), he researches to find his biological family.
Patel recently told Deadline that he was determined to put up the highest ladders to get sunny into the U.S. to see his first film. Well, it worked. Sunny and his Dad are in the air now and will land in Los Angeles tomorrow.
Here is a clip of the film: