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Monday, Jan 17, 2022
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Indian Film Festival Of Melbourne To Screen Movies Made By 34 Women Filmmakers

This year’s line-up includes names like National Award winning filmmaker Rima Das, Cannes Winner Ashmita Guha Neogi, Maanvi Chowdhary and Karishma Dev Dube.

Indian Film Festival Of Melbourne To Screen Movies Made By 34 Women Filmmakers
This year’s line-up includes names like Rima Das, Maanvi Chowdhary and Karishma Dev Dube
Indian Film Festival Of Melbourne To Screen Movies Made By 34 Women Filmmakers
outlookindia.com
2021-08-10T12:59:06+05:30

The 12th edition of the Indian Film Festival of Melbourne (IFFM) has created a record, of sorts, by announcing that out of the 100 movies, it will screen movies by 34 women filmmakers at this year’s festival. These movies will be in Hindi, Telugu, Tamil, Malayalam, Bengali, Assamese, Marathi and other regional Indian languages.

 “It’s been wonderful to see so many incredibly strong and profound stories from female film makers. They are feisty, unapologetic and offer a new perspective. Right from issues about human rights to gender discrimination to emotional human stories, the wide range covers it all. We are very excited and privileged to showcase these films,” says the festival’s director, Mitu Bhowmick Lange.

“It's good to hear that Melbourne Indian Film Festival is showcasing a large number of films by women filmmakers. I am making my fifth film in my village. If I have to, all my life I can make films in and around my village because I can see so many stories around me. Then imagine how many stories are waiting to be told in a country like India with so much diversity is communities, cultures, languages etc. And each woman would have a unique perspective on freedom, identity, feminism, love etc. depending on who they are and where they come from," says filmmaker Rima Das.

The National Award-winning filmmaker adds: "Across the globe, male filmmakers [are getting] outnumbered [by] women filmmakers. Even the top international festivals like Cannes, Toronto and Berlin are seeing a gradual rise in films by women filmmakers and women jury members. Maybe it would take another 10 years to see a significant change. But I am very happy that there is a serious attempt to see stories from women's voice and perspective.” 

Not only filmmakers of feature films but also women filmmakers in strong documentaries and short films have been also been selected this year. The 17-minute, short film, ‘Bittu’, directed by Karishma Dev Dube, will opening the film festival. The film that explores the trait of negligence in human beings was India’s official entry to the 2021 Oscars and had made it to the top 10 list.

“It's a massive honour for me that ‘Bittu’ will be opening the Indian Film Festival of Melbourne. Making a short film comes with no guarantee that it will find an audience or platform, so for the film to find a home all the way across the world means the world to me. I hope I can attend the festival in person someday soon,” says Dube.

Another short documentary that will be screened at the festival is ‘A Period Piece’. Its director Shuchi Talati says, “I’m thrilled that A Period Piece is in such incredible company and part of the rise of female voices in Indian cinema. I made ‘A Period Piece’ for women, so that we could see ourselves, our sexuality and bodies represented on screen from a female and feminist gaze, and I can’t wait to see the stories the other women at the festival have chosen to turn their lens on.”

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