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IFFK 2017: We have to change the structures of gender relationships, Aparna Sen


The veteran actress and filmmaker inaugurated the Women in Cinema Collective stall at the 22nd International Film Festival of Kerala.

Photo: Murukesh Iyer

Anita Paikat

Veteran Bengali actress and filmmaker Aparna Sen inaugurated the Women in Cinema Collective stall at the ongoing International Film Festival of Kerala (IFFK).

The collective was formed earlier this year by a group of 15 female film professionals from Kerala, including editor and artistic director of IFFK Beena Paul, actresses Manju Warrier, Rima Kallingal, Parvathy, and director Anjali Menon. 

They began with a petition to Kerala chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan requesting an inquiry into gender issues of the film industry. The need for such a collective was realized after the incident of a Malayalam actress’s sexual case made headlines in February 2017. 

The Women in Cinema Collective aims at working for equal opportunity and dignity of women employees in the Malayalam film industry. Congratulating the efforts of the collective, Sen said, “The Women in Cinema Collective is formed in solidarity with our colleague who was brutally attacked in February this year. I, too, express my solidarity with this organization. And I think it is very important that we get together and fight the gender inequalities in the film industry and in all areas outside of it.”

Photo: Murukesh Iyer

The actress also spoke on the need of involving men in the debate and stressed on the importance of an active participation from them. “It is also important that men also come with us. Just as we have a sisterhood, men must join as our brothers and stand for us. We have to change the structures of the relationship that exists.”

Sen’s latest film Sonata (2017), starring Shabana Azmi, Lilette Dubey and the filmmaker herself, will be screened at the festival. She will also deliver the Aravindan Memorial Lecture at the festival.

The 22nd International Film Festival of Kerala is being held in Thiruvananthapuram from 8 to 15 December.

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