Dia, Sania, Benegal kickstart National Childrens Film Festival

Dia, Sania, Benegal kickstart National Childrens Film Festival

The first edition of the National Children's Film Festival began here today on children's day with a glittering ceremony attended by acclaimed filmmaker Shyam Benegal, actress Dia Mirza and tennis star Sania Mirza.

The three-day event was inaugurated by Union Minister of Finance and Information and Broadcasting, Arun Jaitley.

Dia, 32, who made her first public appearance in the capital after her wedding last month, said she was honoured to be invited to open the film festival.

"I have hosted the 16th edition of the International Children's Film Festival in my home town Hyderabad. Since my school days I used to be a part of that fest. When I was invited for the National Children's Film Festival here I immediately said yes," said Dia, who had an interactive session with kids on stage.

"I realised in my childhood that sound, light and image can convey love, emotion and thought. I feel that films can inspire and influence children in a very positive way," the actress-turned-producer said.

Benegal, a Multiple National award-winning filmmaker, said that more films directed by children should be promoted and made available to the audience.

"It is important that films should be made for children but we must also try and get children to make films. When adults make films for children they can get a bit patronising in their tone. So hopefully this festival will open doors for young filmmakers," Benegal said.

Sania said that she has been a film buff since her childhood and has learnt a lot from watching movies.

"I am very nostalgic today to attend this event as it reminds me of my childhood. I love films and I think they are instrumental in shaping a child's mind," the tennis ace said.

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