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52nd edition of International Film Festival of India to start in Goa from today

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New Delhi [India], November 20 (ANI): The 52nd edition of the International Film Festival of India (IFFI), Asia’s oldest and India’s biggest film festival, will start in Goa on Saturday.

Founded in 1952, the film festival is held annually, currently in the state of Goa, to celebrate the excellence of world cinema. It will be held from November 20 to November 28 this year.

As per a release from the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, the Union Minister for Information and Broadcasting and Youth Affairs and Sports, Anurag Singh Thakur, and Chief Minister of Goa, Dr Pramod Sawant will grace the occasion. Minister of State for Information and Broadcasting and Fisheries, Animal Husbandry and Dairying Dr L. Murugan will also be present at the opening ceremony.

The festival is conducted jointly by the Directorate of Film Festivals (under Ministry of Information and Broadcasting) and the Entertainment Society of Goa, Government of Goa. The festival provides the perfect platform for understanding and appreciating the film cultures of different nations in the context of their social and cultural ethos.

“The festival will start off with a star-studded inaugural ceremony at Dr Shyama Prasad Mukherjee Indoor Stadium, Panaji, Goa, with the presence of film personalities like Salman Khan, Ranveer Singh, Ritesh Deshmukh, Genelia Deshmukh, Shraddha Kapoor, amongst others. IFFI this year will showcase over 300 films from across the globe. The celebrated film-maker Karan Johar and television personality Manish Paul will host the event,” the release said.

Due to the ongoing COVID-19 Pandemic, IFFI this year will be hybrid and festival delegates will have the option to participate and watch films and other events virtually, sitting in the comforts of their homes. IFFI will feature 148 films from about 73 countries in the International Section with about 12 world premieres, about 7 international premieres, 26 Asia premieres and about 64 India premieres.

The festival received 624 films from 95 countries this time, up from 69 countries in the previous edition. “‘The King of all the World’ (El Rey de Todo El Mundo) directed by Carlos Saura will be the Opening Film of the festival. It will be also the film’s International Premiere. ‘The Power of the Dog’ directed by Jane Campion, Winner of Best Director at Venice Film Festival is chosen as the Mid Fest Film. Grand Prix Award winning movie of Director Asghar Farhadi, A Hero will be the closing film at the Festival,” the Ministry said.

The World Panorama Section of IFFI will showcase 55 cinematic gems across the world. 11 Films are selected for the Festival Kaleidoscope including movies such as Titane (French) and Souad (Arabic). The Retrospective section in the 52nd IFFI will feature renowned Hungarian filmmaker Bela Tarr and Russian filmmaker and stage director Andrei Konchalovsky. Hema Malini, renowned actor and Member of Parliament will be presented the Indian Film Personality of the Year 2021 award at the opening ceremony. Acclaimed lyricist and Chairperson, CBFC Shri Prasoon Joshi will be presented with the award on the closing day.

“Every edition of International Film Festival of India pays a tribute to the stalwarts that the film industry lost. The Homage section of 52nd IFFI will showcase the films of Bertrand Tavernier, Christopher Plummer, Jean-Claude Carriere and Jean-Paul Belmondo as a homage to the veterans. IFFI will also pay Homage to Indian film stalwarts Buddhadeb Das Gupta (Director), Dilip Kumar (Actor), Nedumudi Venu (Actor), Puneeth Rajkumar (Actor), Sanchari Vijay (Actor), Sumitra Bhave (Director), Surekha Sikri (Actress) and Waman Bhonsle (Film Editor),” it stated.

“The festival will pay a Special Tribute to Sir Sean Connery, the first James Bond on the big screen,” the release added. In one of the firsts, IFFI will provide a platform to 75 young filmmakers, actors, singers, scriptwriters, and others to showcase their talent at the globally recognized festival. The 75 creative minds from across India invited to IFFI to connect with celebrated filmmakers and industry experts and attend Master classes at the Festival. The 75 youngsters are selected through competition for young filmmakers from around the country to celebrate the spirit of Azadi ka Amrit Mahotsav.

“For the first time ever, films from five BRICS nations will be showcased through the BRICS Film Festival alongside IFFI. This is the Sixth Edition of the BRICS Film Festival. The five countries viz. Brazil, Russia, South Africa, China and India are also the Focus Countries of the 52nd IFFI and a total of eight films will be screened under this section. The Country of Focus is a special segment that recognizes the cinematic excellence and contributions of the country,” the Ministry informed.

The opening of the NFDC Film Bazar will also be virtually inaugurated on the occasion. In another first, IFFI has invited major OTT players to participate at the Festival. Major OTT platforms Netflix, Amazon Prime, Zee5, Voot and Sony Liv will participate at the Film Festival through exclusive Masterclasses, content launches and previews, curated film package screenings, and various other on-ground and virtual events.

Netflix is organizing a 3-day virtual Master class by the Paris-based renowned school of image and arts, Gobelins – School L’image. Netflix will also organize the India premiere of ‘The Power of the Dog’ by Jane Campion.

It has also proposed to organize a Special Screening of film ‘Dhamaka’, including an introduction of the film by key talent of the film Kartik Aaryanand a preview of Episode 1 of ‘Aranyak’, an upcoming crime thriller series starring Raveena Tandon and Ashutosh Rana. SonyLiv has proposed a Masterclass by Scam-1992 screenplay writer – Sumit Purohit and Saurav Dey, moderated by Indranil Chakraborty, Business Head studio Next. Zee5 has specially curated Breakpoint – the popular Paes and Bhupathi series by Nitesh TiwariAshwini Iyer for IFFI.

Istevan Szabo and Martin Scorsese will be conferred the first ever Satyajit Ray Lifetime Achievement Award at the 52nd International Film Festival of India in Goa. Istvan Szabo is a critically acclaimed Hungarian film director known for masterpieces like Mephisto (1981) and Father (1966).

Martin Scorsese is a major figure of the New Hollywood era, widely regarded as one of the greatest and most influential directors in film history. IFFI 52 will come to a close with the screening of Asghar Farhadi’s A Hero, which won the Grand Prix at the Cannes Film Festival. There will also be about 18 specially curated films presented as part of the ongoing celebration of Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav. (ANI)

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