The 12th annual New York Indian Film Festival (NYIFF), presented by the city-based not-for-profit arts organization Indo-American Arts Council (IAAC), will run from May 23 through 27 in lower Manhattan's Tribeca theatre, considered the home for independent films.
The festival's schedule includes an impressive line up of internationally acclaimed and celebrated films like director Tigmanshu Dhulia's Nana Patekar-starrer 'Shagird', 'Dekh Indian Circus' which won the Audience Choice Award at the 16th Busan International Film Festival 2011, Rajan Khosa's 'Gattu', Ashvin Kumar's 'Inshallah Football', a documentary set in Kashmir and winner of the 2011 National Award.
Also on the festival's schedule is 'Azhagarsamy's Horse,' winner of the 2011 National Awards for Best Popular Film Providing Wholesome Entertainment and Best Supporting Actor. "To commemorate the 100th year of Indian cinema, our 2012 line-up celebrates all that NYIFF finds inspiring about great films depth, character study, ingenious plots, and riveting messages," IACC Executive Director Aroon Shivdasani said. "
These movies have already won National Awards in India, at Cannes, Sundance and the Berlin Film Festivals. We are proud to share our entire schedule with New York cinephiles," Shivdasani added. Celebrities expected to attend the festival include Kapoor and Bhandarkar, director Mira Nair and model and television host Padma Lakshmi.
Ghosh's 'Chitrangada' will have its world premiere at the festival. The National Award winning director faces the camera again in the role of a choreographer who plans to stage the dance drama Chitrangada on the occasion of Rabindranath's 150th birth anniversary.
The festival will also pay a special tribute to the legendary Dev Anand and showcase the colorized version of his cult hit 'Hum Dono.' Director Shyam Benegal will also be honoured with a retrospective of his movies - 'Zubeida', 'Mammo' and 'Sardari Begum'. Kashyap's 'Gangs of Wasseypur', the Manoj Bajpai-starrer movie going to the Cannes festival this year, would be the closing night film while Bedabrata Pain's directorial debut 'Chittagong' will open the festival.
Set in the turbulence of the 1930s British India, 'Chittagong' is the true story of a 14-year-old boy and of his journey to find where he belongs. An inductee to the US Space Technology Hall of Fame, Pain gave up his career as a NASA scientist in 2008 to pursue his passion of filmmaking.
Pain was the executive producer of the 2005 national award-winning film 'Amu' and author of 'Behind the events in Kashmir'. Regional language films in Tamil, Bengali, and Marathi will also be showcased, notable among them being the Tamil film '3' directed by Rajnikanth's daughter Aishwarya Rajinikanth Dhanush and featuring Dhanush and Shruti Haasan.
Other highlights of the festival include Obaid Chinoy's Oscar-winning documentary 'Saving face', 'Transgenders: Pakistan's Open Secret' and award-winning films from South Africa, Australia and Sri Lanka.
NYIFF is the longest-running showcase of Indian films in the US. It was born in the aftermath of 9/11 in response to then New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani's call to New Yorkers to help rebuild a limping city.