A Film Festival on Mahabharata

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Pune, 19 December: Pune International Centre in association with National Film Archive of India (NFAI) will be organising a unique Film festival based on the epic Mahabharata. This festival of ten widely varying films on the Mahabharata will be organised from Friday, 23rd December to Monday, 26th December at Film and Television Institute of India (FTII), Law College Road, Pune. This exclusive Film Festival will be free and open for all on first come first basis. Few seats will be reserved for PIC members.

The festival shall begin at 6.00pm on Friday, 23rd December with the opening film ‘A Throw of Dice’ at Film and Television Institute of India (FTII), Law College Road, Pune. The festival shall be scheduled from 10.30am to 9.00pm on the other days.

This festival is a tribute to the centenary of the establishment of the Bhandarkar Oriental Research Institute (BORI, founded in 1917) and to its monumental achievement – the publication of the Critical Edition of the Mahabharata. Fifty years in the making, over 15,000 pages long containing 89,000 verses, the Critical Edition was released by the then President of India, Dr Sarvapalli Radhakrishnan at the Institute in 1966.

The festival will be inaugurated by Dr Devdutt Pattanaik, a medical doctor whose focus is mythology, myth and religion. Dr Pattanaik has a large following for his Devlok programme on Epic Channel. Dr Shrikant Bahulkar, Honorary Secretary-in-Charge of BORI and Santosh Ajmera, Officer on Special Duty, NFAI will be the Guest of Honour.

The films that will be screened reflect the different approaches to the great epic by filmmakers – an epic that continues to fascinate, inspire and guide even today. They cover a wide spectrum in terms of form, genre and interpretation: silent cinema, animation, children’s film, costume drama, modern adaptation, animation, tele serial and so on in Hindi, Tamil, Telugu and English. Many of the films have won national awards.