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Some Indian filmmakers demand awards to screen their films at LIFFT: Festival founder Riju Bajaj

Actor-filmmaker Riju Bajaj made the revelation days after actor Shahid Kapoor reportedly refused to perform at an awards show on learning that he would not be getting an award.

Keyur Seta

Recently, some news reports said Kabir Singh (2019) actor Shahid Kapoor walked out of an awards show and refused to perform after the organizers failed to choose him for the Best Actor award as he had been reportedly promised. 

No one has said anything on record about the incident, neither the organizers nor the actor. But actor-filmmaker Riju Bajaj, founder of the LIFFT India Filmotsav at Lonavala, told Cinestaan.com that he routinely gets demands for awards from Indian filmmakers whose films are shortlisted for screening at the festival.

Expressing annoyance with this attitude, Bajaj said, “When I approach them to screen their films here, many ask if they will be getting an award. In fact, at least 50% of Indian filmmakers have asked this time for some award in order to screen their films here.”

Bajaj said he has never faced such demands from foreign filmmakers. “None of the foreign filmmakers has ever asked us for an award or even mentioned any such thing," the festival founder said. "They just want to screen their films here and reach out to as many countries as possible. That’s it! On the other hand, our filmmakers keep asking for awards. I would urge them to see the attitude of these foreign filmmakers.”

The five-day LIFFT India Filmotsav kicked off on Thursday 12 December at Lonavala’s Fariyas Resort.

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