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Sharma's 'Final Solution' wins award at HongKong film fest

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MUMBAI: Rakesh Sharma's documentary film Final Solution won the silver award in the Best Documentary category at the 28th Hong Kong International film festival.

Eight films from all over the world were chosen to compete for the Humanitarian award for documentaries and Final Solution is the first ever Indian film to win this award.

Other films included Checkpoint, Gift of Life, Memories of Rain, Pictorial Letters, Power Trip, S21, The Khmer Rouge Killing Machine and Shattered Dreams.

Final Solution was also picked as Critics choice a list of 15 must-see films among the over 300 movies from 40 countries at the HongKong film festival.

Earlier Final Solution was rejected by MIFF 2004 (Mumbai International film festival) and was screened at Vikalp: Films for Freedom, a parallel festival organised by the Campaign Against Censorship.

Sharma has been an active member of the campaign since its inception in July-August 2003. Sharmas previous film Aftershocks: The Rough Guide to Democracy was also rejected by MIFF in 2002. It went on to participate in over 90 international film festivals and won 10 international awards including the prestigious Robert Flaherty prize in 2002.

Final Solution was premiere internationally at the prestigious Berlin International film festival in February 2004, where it won two awards. The first award the Wolfgang Staudte award. Sharma's film is the first Indian film to win this award which was instituted in 1990 at the Berlin film festival.

Final Solution has been invited to several international film festivals including the prestigious Canadian film festival HotDocs, Durban International film festival, Zanzibar international film festival, Dokfest (Munich), Flanders (Belgium), Fribourg international film festival (Switzerland), Commonwealth film festival (UK), One world filmfest (Prague), Istanbul 1001fest, Singapore, World Social Forum (Mumbai; Indian premiere) etc.

Final Solution is now awaiting certification from the Censor Board for public exhibition within India and is a study of the politics of hate. Set in Gujarat during the period February 2002 - July 2003, the film examines the consequences of Hindu-Moslem polarisation in the state in the wake of the Godhra tragedy and the genocidal violence against Moslems in Gujarat.

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