Director Avinash Arun's Marathi film 'Killa' has won the Crystal Bear for the best film awarded by the children's jury in Generation Kplus section at the 64th Berlin International Film Festival. The jury in its citation said the film, which deals with the universal conflict of migration and how it impacts the lives of people, especially children, made them want to discover India.
"This film convinced us in all respects: with his good camera work and the great actors, but also because of its incredibly beautiful nature images which blend perfectly with the music. This film made us all want to discover India," the citation read.
'Killa' is the third Marathi film to be selected in Berlinale in its entire history and it is the first Indian feature film to win this award. Produced by Madhukar R Musle, Ajay G Rai, Alan McAlex under the banner, Jar Pictures and presented by M R Filmworks, the film was a part of NFDC Film Bazaar's Work-in-Progress (WIP) Lab in 2013.
"I am completely overwhelmed by how children reacted to the film. The film reached to its audience where it belongs to. I am so thankful to Berlinale for providing us this platform to showcase our culture," Avinash, an FTII graduate, said.
Avinash is currently working as the director of photography for Nishikant Kamat's next starring Irrfan Khan. Film's producer Ajay G Rai said, "The recognition from Berlinale underlines our faith and commitment to produce quality cinema. We feel honoured and proud to represent Indian cinema on global platform."
The film stars Amruta Subhash (of 'Vihir' fame), Archit Deodhar, Parth Bhalerao ('Bhootnath Returns') and Shrikant Yadav. 'Killa' is slated for India release this May.