PIFF Interactions held at NFAI on Saturday, January 11, 2020

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11 Jan 2020, Pune- Samar Nakhate, Creative Director, PIFF conducted these interactions

1) Movie- The Seed / JWLWI
Rajni Basumatary, Director and Actor.

“The film deals with the insurgency that rocked Assam during the 80’s and 90’s. There were lots of tragedies that took place with families destroyed or dislocated including mine and even after 20 years the ordeal is yet to see the end. Since the women in Assam were the ones who were most affected, I was able to address their problem through this movie,” said Rajni Basumatary, Director and Actor.

The Seed is a Bodo-language Indian film which reflects the insurgency problem, excesses of security forces, insecurity among the rural masses who were tortured or killed in Assam.

“Some of the characters in the film are the victims themselves who gave a natural and powerful performance even though it was painful for them to relive the moments,” said Basumatary.

2) Movie- Chivti / The Remains

Rajkumar Tangde, Director, Kailash Sanap and Ajinath Dhakne, producers and actors including Sambhaji Tangde, Kishore Udan, Ashwini Bhalekar, Milind Shinde, Yogesh Shirsat, Vishnu Kedar, Gajendra Tangde and Narendra Bhide, Music composer.

“We wanted to tell the story in a different way and through this film we have tried to show many things from the same framework. I was not very inclined to make a film based on a fictional story but wanted to focus on events that were happening around me. Each of the actors working in the film has a great deal to do with the subject itself,” said Rajkumar Tangde, Director, who had been working on the script for past 5 years. The movie is about Vitthal, who belongs to the young, educated generation of a socially backward community and is forced to rely on a life-threatening occupation like sugarcane cutting for survival. He travels along with the rest, while they live like outcasts, sacrifice their self-respect, and endure bitter hardships.

3) Movie- Mosaic Portrait
Wang Zijian, Producer

“We decided to make this film after a news of a 14-year-old girl being pregnant in a city in China was reported in the local newspaper. However, newspapers in China do not have freedom, so whatever news that is printed is considered as true. Many times, the truth behind a particular story is not revealed,” said Wang Zijian, Producer. The movie is about a sexually abused teenager called Ying. Ying’s father discovers her to be pregnant and seeks for justice in vain. Jia, a journalist from Shenzhen, shows interest in the case and gets lost in trailing into the rebellious girl’s real life.

Zijian said that the story in the film was based on real life characters. “It is a critical issue and we want to broadcast it so it could reach out to people. However, we are yet to receive permission to show the film from the police and government in China.”

4) Movie- Tall Tales
Vica Kerekes, Actress

“After World War II, the times were trying and desperate and there was lots of insecurity in Europe. The film deals with lots of secrets, as to who’s telling the truth and who’s lying and people everywhere looking for happiness,” said Vica Kerekes, who plays the lead role of Judit in the film. ‘Tall Tales’ is the first feature film of director, Attila Szasz, which deals with a thrilling story of a con man who tries to find an opportunity during the World War II. The man flees to Budapest, where he is given shelter by a woman and her son. The man then has a love affair with the woman, whose husband is about to return home from the front.
“There are scenes of domestic violence as well. I got a chance to play a very interesting character and it was an important role for me,” said Kerekes.

5) Movie- Market – Iewduh
Pradip Kurbah, Director

“The movie is set in Shillong and takes its title from the oldest market in Meghalaya’s capital. Shooting the scenes in the bazaar was challenging as the process and settings changed everyday and planning would get difficult. We had to gel around with the characters who were real life shopkeepers. The film was sync-sound and was designed in such a way that it connected emotionally with all the characters,” said Pradip Kurbah, Director.

Market is set within the winding alleyways of Iewduh, also known as Bara Bazar, and explores life’s big and small truths through a handful of working-class characters.

6) Movie- Anandi Gopal
Sameer Vidwans, Director and Bhagyashree Milind and Lalit Prabhakar, Actors

The film is based on a true story from the 19th century India. Nine-year-old Yamuna (aka Anandi) was married to Gopalrao Joshi, who had asked her parents to ensure she becomes literate. After a personal tragedy, Anandi vows to become a doctor and Gopal supports her decision. But they are heavily criticized by their kin and society, which does not accept a girl being educated and more so become a doctor.

“The social situation in Maharashtra in the early 90’s was different then what it is now, so while forming the story, we tried to understand the mentality of the men and women of that time as well as their mentality about education, ” said Sameer Vidwans, Director.

“We had letters written by Gopal Joshi and Anandi Joshi to each other, which helped us understand the relationship between the two and their revolutionary ideas,” added Vidwans.

7) Movie- Tree Under the Sun
Bijukumar Damodaran, Director

“It was the toughest film that I shot as we had to shoot in extreme cold, which the people in South India have never experience. The film deals with the people from the lower strata of the society who have no option but look for job elsewhere as the government gives them a cold shoulder. Despite high literacy rate in Kerala the problem of caste discrimination still exists though not on a very large level, but nevertheless its creeping through certain elements,” said Bijukumar Damodaran, Director.

The movie is about a Dalit family from Kerala who migrate to a lower Himalaya village in search of better living conditions. It shows how the socially backward community in India grapples with caste discrimination in their daily life.