The 53rd edition of International Film Festival of India (IFFI) kicked off in Goa on November 20 with the participation of filmmakers and cinema lovers from across the globe.
Actors Ajay Devgn, Suniel Shetty, Manoj Bajpayee, Paresh Rawal and ‘RRR’ writer V Vijayendra Prasad were felicitated on the occasion for their contributions to the film industry. The opening ceremony was held at the Syama Prasad Mukherjee indoor stadium in Taleigao.
The Satyajit Ray Lifetime Achievement Award was bestowed upon veteran director Carlos Saura, who along with Luis Bunuel and Pedro Almodovar is considered to be one of Spain’s most renowned filmmakers. The award was received by his daughter Anna Saura Ramon, while Carlos Saura thanked the IFFI organisers virtually.
Speaking on the occasion, Anurag Thakur, Union Minister for Information and Broadcasting, said that the Covid pandemic was a challenging time, yet India has put up its best show in two fields — cinema and sports.
“It has been our vision that we embrace new platforms such as OTTs and make them an inclusive part of the festival,” he said. “We don’t have dearth of talent, infrastructure, shooting sites etc. Hence, we need to trust ourselves and make India the hub of filmmaking,” Thakur added.
The nine-day festival featuring 280 films from 79 countries opened with the Austrian film ‘Alma and Oskar’, directed by Dieter Berner, while Polish director Krzysztof Zanussi’s ‘Perfect Number’ will be the closing film.
France is the ‘Spotlight’ country this year and eight films will be screened under the ‘Country Focus’ package. As many as 25 feature films and 19 non-feature films from India will be showcased in the ‘Indian Panorama’ section, while 183 films will be a part of the international section.
The National Film Development Corporation (NFDC) in collaboration with Entertainment Society of Goa (ESG) is organising the nine-day event, which will conclude on November 28.
Chiranjeevi is Indian Film Personality of the Year
Union Minister for Information & Broadcasting Anurag Thakur announced that the Indian Film Personality of the Year award will be conferred upon South cinema megastar Chiranjeevi.
In a career spanning nearly four decades, Chiranjeevi has acted in more than 150 films, primarily in the Telugu film industry. “Greatly Delighted and Humbled at this honour, Sri @ianuragthakur! My deep gratitude to Govt of India @MIB_India @IFFIGoa @Anurag_Office and all my loving fans only because of whom i am here today!” the actor said in a tweet.
Earlier, Thakur had tweeted: “Sh Chiranjeevi Ji has had an illustrious career spanning almost four decades, w/over 150 films as an actor, dancer & producer. He is immensely popular in Telugu Cinema w/ incredible performances touching hearts! Congratulations @KChiruTweets!”