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Mumbai's beloved film festival says action

The 16th edition of the Mumbai Film Festival will soon be rolling the red carpet. While it has had a rough patch in the recent past, this year’s preview promises quality cinema and lots more

The curtains have been raised and with great aplomb, the line-up and dates for the 16th edition of the Mumbai Film Festival has been announced. Though the festival, unlike the preceding years, had been making headlines for a lack of funds, the crisis has been momentarily averted and the programme hasn’t lost any of its shine.

Chaitanya Tamhane’s Cour
Chaitanya Tamhane’s Court is the Indian film that will be competing in the international section

The festival boasts of a roster of 185 films from more than 65 countries and promises $2,00,000 cash prizes; almost the same figures as last year’s, less only by a fraction.

Goodbye Language by Jean Luc Godard is one of the films that will be screened at MFF
Goodbye Language by Jean Luc Godard is one of the films that will be screened at MFF

Srinivasan Narayanan, festival director, shares, “The journey to raise '5 crore has been challenging. We have been able to raise '2.75 crore due to the generosity of the people in Mumbai who love this festival. Yet, we have '2.25 crore to go, which can be pledged by people until the culmination of the festival.”

Kim Ki Duk’s One on One
Kim Ki Duk’s One on One

This year, actor Catherine Deneuve (of Repulsion, Tristana and Dancer In The Dark fame) will be felicitated with The Lifetime Achievement Award, while closer home, veteran actress Helen will be lauded with the same.

Richard Linklater’s Boyhood
Richard Linklater’s Boyhood

As per several social networking sites the announcement of Xavier Dolan’s Mommy, Richard Linklater’s Boyhood, Kim Ki Duk’s One on One and Jean Luc Godard’s Party Girl and Goodbye to Language have been creating the maximum buzz. Narayanan affirms that the festival, which is synonymous with award-winning films from Cannes to Locarno Film Festival, will feature topliners this year as well.

However, once you carefully scan through the details, you discern the reversal of the suburban cinema halls becoming the main venue whereas Liberty Cinemas as the satellite venue. Prior to this, the 15th edition had Liberty Cinema and Metro Big Cinema as the main venues. When pressed, the director begrudgingly shares that they might have to cut down on screenings as well.

But on a more optimistic note, cinematographer Christopher Doyle (In the Mood for Love and Chunking Express) and director-writer Mahamat Saleh Haroun (Girgis) will be conducting masterclasses while the India Gold Jury will be presided by Serbian director Goran Paskaljevic.

Mumbai boy Chaitanya Tamhane’s Court, that has been creating a stir on the international circuit, will be the only Indian film competing in the international section. Watch out for the Arab cinema section along with a series of screenings of restored classics that will be shown as a tribute.

The festival is celebrating the 100th year of Mosfilms Studio — the largest and oldest Russian studio that supported the works of Andrei Tarkovsky and Sergei Eisenstein along with Akira Kurosawa’s War and Peace.

With the festival season set to be in full swing in October, we hope that the cherished film festival has many sparks and trailblazers to rave about.

From: October 14 to 21
Log on to: mumbaifilmfest.org

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