Saturday, December 17, 2011

10th Third Eye Asian Film Festival in Mumbai next week

It's film festival time, and the Third Eye Asian Film Festival has chalked out an interesting line up of films for its 10th edition.

Third Eye will be inuaugrated on Dec 22 at Ravindra Natya Mandir, or also called PL Deshpande Maharashtra Kala Academy, Prabhadevi in Mumbai. A total of 156 films including 110 feature-length films, and 46 short fiction films would be screened during the week.

Chinese film-maker Wong Xiaoshuai's latest film 11 Flowers will be the opening film of the festival, and Ketan Mehta's much acclaimed Rang Rasiya, based on painter Raja Ravi Varma's life, is likely to be the closing film on Dec 29.

The centrepiece of the festival will be a not-to-be-missed film, Iranian director Asghar Farhadi's A Separation, which won the Golden Bear for Best Film at the 2011 Berlin International Film Festival and Silver Bear for the Best Actor and Best Actress!

The prestigious Asian Film Culture Award, given every year to an Asian director for his outstanding contribution, will be presented to noted Afghan director Siddiq Barmak, who made the acclaimed film Osama.

Bengali actress Madhabi Mukherjee, the lead actress of many of Satyajit Ray's classics including Charulata, will inaugurate a special section, Tagore Week, to commemorate the 150th birth anniversary of Rabindranath Tagore. The section will showcase a selection of seven films made from 1957 to 2011 based on Thakurda's works. It includes Teen Kanya, and Charulata by Manikda, Kabuliwala, Kshudit Pashan and Atithi by Tapan Sinha, and Choker Bali and Nauka Dubi by Rituparno Ghosh.

In the Asian Master section, the festival will showcase Japanese director Yasujiro Ozu, and screen six of his films including The Munketa Sisters, Tokyo Story, Early Spring, Drifting Weeds, The Early Autumn, and Autumn Afternoon. Ozu needs no introduction to Indian cinema lovers.

In Reflection section, five films will be showcased from Iran, Afghanistan and Egypt. Siddiq Barmak's Osama, and Opium War, Asghar Farahadi's Dancing in the Dust, and Beautiful City, and Youssef Chahine's The Destiny

                                         A still from The History of Cinema in village of Popielawy

The festival has started a new section in the last two years titled European Connection which will showcase the work of Polish director Jan Jacob Kolski. Indian cineastes are familiar with the cinema of Polish directors like Kieslowski, and Zanussi who largely made films when Polish government was still involved in film production. Post 1990, there was a major shift in Polish cinema policy, and private sector began making films. Kolski's work belongs to the period after this shift.

The festival will also celebrate the golden jubilee of Film and Television Institute of India which completes 50 years this year by showcasing some films made by FTII alumni. The section will feature Adoor Gopalakrishnan's Katha Purusham, Girish Kasarvalli's Thaisaheba, Vikas Desai's Gehrai, Janu Barua's Haldiya Chore, Ketan Mehta's Mirch Masala, and Shaji Karun's Piravi.

The Focus on Filmmaker section will feature Chinese director Xie Fei.  Five of his films including A Girl from Hunan, Silver Bear winner Black Snow,  Golden Bear winner Woman from the Lake of Scented Souls, Best Direction winner at Montreal Film festival A Mongolian Tale, and Song of Tibet. Japanese film-maker Takeshi Kitano's three films -- Kids Return, Kikujiro, and A Scene at the Sea -- will also be showcased.

                                          Stills from Turkish films, Distant and My Only Sunshine

The Focus on One Country will feature Turkey this year, and will screen seven films, and all of them have won awards at the international film festival circuit. My Marlon and Brando won the Fipresci award at Jerusalem and Yerevan film festival, Uzak (Distant) won the Grand prize of jury at Cannes FIlm festival, Yamurta (Egg) won the Golden Tulip at Istabul film festival, , My Only Sunshine won the Special Jury award at Berlin.

The festival will also pay tribute to Ashok Kumar on the occasion of his 100th birth anniversary by screening BR Chopra's  Gumraah. A tribute to Dev Anand, who passed away on Dec 4, has also been planned.

A package from Uzbekistan will be screened for the first time in India. The festival will also have its other regular sections including Spectrum Asia (38 films), Indian Vista (seven films), and competition sections -- First and Second Film of a Director (16 films), and Short Fiction Film (46 films).

These films would also be screened simultaneously in Pune, and Kolhapur.

How to get your pass for Third Eye

1. Write an email to with the subject line: Delegate Registration. Write your name, age, address, and phone number, and put in a request for a delegate pass. The pass costs Rs 500 and will include an ID card with multiple access to the screenings, and a festival catalogue. Based on your email, a pass would be made for you which you can collect the Delegate Registration desks functioning at Plaza Cinema and Ravindra Natya Mandir from Dec 20 onwards. The desk timing are 1 to 7 pm.

2. Visit the Delegate Registration Desks at Plaza Cinema and Ravindra Natya Mandir, and enrol yourself as a delegate after paying a fee of Rs 500. College students and film society members can avail of a special discount and pay only Rs 250.

So happy viewing!

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