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Kiran Rao kicks off Jio MAMI film festival lineup

The juries, programme and honorees of the upcoming Jio MAMI Mumbai Film Festival were announced by its illustrious board and festival members.

Photo: Shutterbugs Images

Sonal Pandya

The 18th Jio MAMI Mumbai Film Festival unveiled its programme for eight days of film goodness in a star-studded press conference in Mumbai last evening.

Festival director Anupama Chopra promised more announcements were forthcoming while talking about the terrific opening film by Konkona Sen Sharma, A Death in the Gunj, that will be presented at the restored Opera House. Co-chairperson Kiran Rao talked about building a ‘robust, more dynamic’ film culture through the film festival.

Anurag Kashyap, Siddharth Roy Kapur and Karan Johar (Photo: Shutterbugs Images)

Board members Karan Johar, Vishal Bhardwaj, Anurag Kashyap, Siddharth Roy Kapur, Dibakar Banerjee, Zoya Akhtar, Rohan Sippy and Vikramaditya Motwane announced the highlights of the upcoming film festival. This year, the Excellence in Cinema International Award will be given to Chinese filmmaker Jia Zhangke while the Excellence in Cinema Award, India will be given to Sai Paranjpye.

The international jury will be headed by filmmaker Miguel Gomes, filmmaker Tala Hadid, Anurag Kashyap, Hot Docs president Chris McDonald and producer Christine Vachon. The India Gold Jury consists of Turkish filmmaker Reha Erdem (head of jury), Oscar-winning composer Mychael Danna, celebrity photographer Yonfan and Time film critic Stephanie Zacharek.

At the conference, board member Motwane stated, “It’s grown a lot and all for the better. The quality of films, the selection of films, it’s all become fantastic. It’s my favourite festival.” Jury member Anurag Kashyap joked that when his films weren’t releasing, Black Friday was first shown at the festival many years ago.

Dibakar Banerjee and Vishal Bhardwaj (Photo: Shutterbugs Images)

Dibarkar Banerjee talked about his reasons for being a part of the festival, “Filmmakers need one thing: respect. Some get money and respect, some get only respect and some get nothing. But more than money, we all filmmakers crave respect. Jio MAMI has given us so much respect that we all bow our heads and come when they call. Two sections get respect in this festival, the filmmakers and the audience.”

Kangana Ranaut (Photo: Shutterbugs Images)

Kangana Ranaut was also present to show her support for the home-grown film festival and unveiled the trophy which will be presented at the end of the festival. International films from Ken Loach’s I, Daniel Blake which won the big prize at Cannes to Asghar Farhadi’s The Salesman will be shown. So will Lav Diaz’s The Woman Who Left which clocks in at 227 minutes and won the Golden Lion at the 73rd Venice International Film Festival. 

Kashyap’s Clean Shaven, part of the anthology that makes up Madly, starring Radhika Apte will also be screened. Other Indian films include Milind Dhaimade’s Tu Hai Mera Sunday, Alankrita Srivastava’s Lipstick Under My Burkha and Rohit Mittal’s Autohead.

The Jio MAMI Mumbai Film Festival runs from 20 to 27 October.