Film fest off to a rollicking start

Last Updated 26 December 2013, 22:09 IST

The curtains went up for the sixth edition of the Bangalore International Film Festival-2013 (Biffes) on Thursday, with actor Kamal Haasan harping on Bangalore’s potential to become the centre of international cinema.

“Like in the case of IT, it (Bangalore) can become a centre of international cinema with the chief minister’s assistance. Only he can empower it,” Hassan said, after inaugurating the film festival, that is on till January 2.

Highlighting how the country’s film industry had come a long way to make a name on the world stage, Haasan said: “All dreams have come true. In the last three months, I attended four international film festivals in India. One in Goa, another in Kolkata, one in Chennai and now in Bangalore.”    

While one may feel proud at the achievements of the past, there is a clear need for Indian cinema to look out at the world cinema and audience, he added. Remembering his earlier days in the film industry, he recounted how he would come to Bangalore and even make time from his shooting schedule to watch films here. “I have watched some of the best films of the world in Bangalore,” said Haasan.   

Pointing out the areas where the government could help in realising this dream, H N Narahari Rao, artistic director, Biffes, 2013, highlighted the need for a separate complex where movies could be screened. “Just as Kolkata has Nandan Complex, there is a need to have our own complex here. We need a film festival to attract cinema lovers from all over the world,” said Rao.

Pledging his assistance to help build the film industry in the City and the State, Chief Minister Siddaramaiah said that his government was committed to the cause.

 Recognising the need for a “permanent residential complex for films,” he said that he would ask the Department of Information and the Karnataka Chalanachitra Academy to coordinate and implement this proposal. 

Expressing concern over the content in today’s films, Siddaramaiah emphasised the need for quality cinema. Noting that he was “deeply worried” about the quality of films these days, the chief minister said, “Films should not only be big, but should also have quality. They should be (poor films) may pollute the rich culture and have a negative impact on society.”  
A galaxy of film personalities from across the world and prominent people from the Kannada film industry were present at the ceremony which was marked by a variety of cultural programmes.

Screenings today

Fun Cinemas - The German Doctor, Lucia Puenzo, Argentina (10 am); Vara: A Blessing, Khyentse Norbu, Bhutan (12.30 pm); My Sweet Pepperland, Hiner Saleem, Iraq (3.30pm); Hush... Girls Don’t Scream, Pouran Derakshandesh, Iran (6 pm); Short Term 12, Destin Cretton, USA (8.30 pm).

Fun Screen 2 - Power Keg / Carabet Balkan, Goran Pascaljevic, (10.15 am); Mirror Without Reflection, Nosir Saidov, Tajikistan, (12.45 pm); 13 Semester, Frieder Wittich, Germany (3.45 pm); Apur Panchali (Song of Apu), Kaushik Ganguly, India, (6.15 pm); Another House, Matthew Roy, Canada, (8.45 pm).

Fun Screen 3 - Parthav - The Influence, Dilniwaz Muntazir, India, (10.30 am), Barefoot to Goa, Praveen Morchhale, India (1.30 pm); Gloria, Sebastian Leilo, (4 pm); Manuscripts Don’t Burn, Mohammed Rasoulof, Iran (6.30 pm); Mother I Love You, Janis Nords Lativia (9.30 pm).

Lido Screen 1 - Kolka Cool, Juris, Puskis, Lativia (10 am); Bharath Stores (P Seshadri, India, (12.30 pm); Wadija, Haifa Al Mansour, Saudi Arabia, (3.30 pm), Lucia, Pawan Kumar, India (6 pm), Oh Boy, Jan Ole Jerster, Germany, (8.30 pm).

Lido Screen 2 - The Eternal Return of Antonis Paraskevas, Elina Psikou, Greece (10.15 am); I.D., Kamal K M, India (12.45 pm); Little Lion, Samuel Collardey, France (3.45 pm); Chittagong, Bedabrata Pain, India (6.15 pm); Housten, Bastian Gunther, Germany (8.45 pm).

Sulochana - Re-Encounter, Min Yong-Keun, South Korea (8.30 am); Jin, Reha Erdem, Turkey (11 am); Gate of Hell, Teinosuke Kinugasa, Japan (2 pm); Remembering Bimal Roy, Joy Bimal Roy, India (6.15 pm); 27 Down, Awtar Krishna Kaul, India (8 pm).

Priyadarshini - 10+10, 20 Directors, Taiwan (9 am); Fynbos, Harry Patramanis, USA (11.30 am); Back to 1942, Xiaogang Feng, China (2.30 pm); Rome, Open City, Roberto Rosselini, Italy (5.30 pm); Trouble Every Day, Claire Denis, France (8.30 pm).

‘Sick artistes ignored’

The inauguration ceremony saw some tense moments when Shivamurthy, a former voiceover artiste, cut into Kannada actor Sudeep’s speech to highlight his plight. 

Shivamurthy said the film fraternity should think of artistes who are unwell. Speaking to reporters later, he said: “I have been in the industry for 30 years. I lost my legs, but there has been no response from the government or anybody else,” he said. 

Minister for Kannada and Culture Umashree, an actor herself, said the issue would be addressed.

(Published 26 December 2013, 20:19 IST)

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