11th Mumbai International Film Festival receives record entries

NEW DELHI: The 11th edition of the Mumbai International Film Festival for Documentary, Short and Animation Films (MIFF), to be held in Mumbai next month, received 864 entries from 37 countries - an all time record.

Organised by the Films Division, MIFF will be held from 3 to 9 February at the prestigious National Centre for the Performing Arts (NCPA), Nariman Point, Mumbai.

The Selection Committee consisting of eminent filmmakers, journalists and critics had previewed the films, the total duration of which crosses more than 400 hours. A total of 64 films have been selected for the Competition Section and 43 films have been taken in the Non-Competition Section.

Films Division Chief Producer and Festival Director Kuldeep Sinha said, “MIFF, which began in 1990, is rated as one of the world’s best and largest documentary film festivals. It has now gained recognition on par with renowned International Film Festivals like Leipzig , Berlin, Oberhausen, Krakow and Tampere.

From this year, the International and Indian Competition Sections have been merged into one. Sinha said, “Indian documentary producers have now achieved high level of creative as well as technical excellence, to compete with the best in the world."

He said the award money had been enhanced in each category, totaling to Rs 2.275 million. The best short film/documentary (upto 30 minutes) will be awarded a Golden Conch and Rs 3,00,000 cash prize. Another Golden Conch and Rs 3,00,000 award will be given to the best film/documentary over 30 minutes duration.

Awards are being given for the best animation film, fiction film, and student’s film. The Maharashtra Government’s Dadasaheb Phalke Chitranagari will give a Trophy and Rs 1,00,000 for the best debut director.

The “Dr. V. Shantaram Lifetime Achievement Award” will be awarded to an Indian filmmaker for his/her contribution to the documentary film movement, with cash award and trophy.

Apart from the Competition Section, there will be screening of Retrospectives and Special packages, Spectrum India, Seminars and Open Forum during MIFF 2010. Retrospectives and Special Packages include Jury’s retrospectives, Women packages, Oscar nominated films, immigration issues, environment, global warming, Cinema legends and icons of the Indian Freedom Movement. Films from Bhutan and Argentina figure in the country focus.

Other packages include Students’ films from L.V. Prasad Institute in Chennai, Satyajit Ray Film and Television Institute of India in Kolkata, and National Institute of Design in Ahmedabad, films from North East India, treasures from the National Film Archives of India (NFAI) and Puppet Films.

The NFAI, Pune, will also stage a show of pre-cinema projection technique called ‘Shambharik Kharolika’ or the magic lantern (staged earlier at the International Film Festival of India in Goa in November 2009).

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