Television

Discovery Networks (Asia) & Nokia select 10 Indians as semi-finalists for Mobile Filmakers 2006 Awards

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MUMBAI: Discovery Networks Asia -a division of real -world entertainment company Discovery Communications- coupled with the leading mobile communications company Nokia's initiative giving consumers the opportunity to try their hand at mobile filmmaking for the Mobile FilmMakers 2006 Awards sees ten Indians in the list of short-listed applicants as semi finalists.

The 10 semi-finalists -J. Philip, Jeevan Konkar, Kayoom Mohd. Hanif Mistry, Koushik Choudhury, Kshitij Shankhdhar, Prasad Indap, Sajal Maiti, Samrat Sengupta, Sunil Babbar, and Tushar Joshi - have attended a special workshop on 5 August in New Delhi to learn the finer points of filmmaking and vie for a place in the finals.

Organized by Discovery Networks Asia and Nokia, local filmmaker Saumya Sen was present at the workshop to offer insights and invaluable tips on mobile filmmaking. Similar workshops will also be conducted in other countries for semi-finalists from across the region.

The workshops, conducted by experts in the industry, provide the semi-finalists with an opportunity to further hone their filmmaking skills. The semi-finalists will also learn about the many filmmaking functions and features of the Nokia N90, which they will be using to shoot a 30-second clip.

A panel of judges comprising representatives from Discovery and Nokia will select the best two clips, and the two finalists will represent India at the regional workshop in Singapore. Finalists from all participating countries will be announced at a later date. The grand prize winner will take home USD$10,000 cash and will also win a three-month stint at Discovery's regional headquarters in Singapore.

The Mobile FilmMakers 2006 Awards is the second collaboration between Discovery Networks Asia and Nokia, following the success of last year's initiative. This initiative empowers mobile phone users everywhere with the knowledge and technology of mobile filmmaking at their fingertips, and provides them with the opportunity to showcase their talent.

Discovery Networks Asia senior VP of programming and creative services James Gibbons said, "We were very impressed by the quality of entries this year. We hope to uncover more new talent from India and other countries throughout the region. The number of entries received also shows that interest in the genre of mobile filmmaking is growing, and an increasing number of people are taking an interest not only in snapping photos with their mobile phones, but also in shooting their own mobifilms and expressing their creativity in a different medium. The Mobile FilmMakers initiative has clearly helped change the traditional concept of mobile phones, and has taken filmmaking in an exciting new direction."

Nokia business manager, imaging solutions, Shyam Sundar said, "The training that the semi-finalists and finalists of the Mobile FilmMakers 2006 Awards will receive during the workshops are invaluable. We hope the workshop participants will not only put their new-found skills to good use, but also teach others in their community to build the mobile filmmaking genre. With devices like the Nokia 90, and the soon to be released Nokia N93, both armed with Carl Zeiss optics, we hope to make mobile filmmaking a common and enjoyable activity amongst camera phone users."

To enter the contest, applicants were required to submit a brief written description of not more than 300 words with the theme:"My Discovery". This was a chance for participants to explore the documentary filmmaker within themselves - share unique, insights, knowledge and experiences and bring to life a 'discovery moment' as it is imagined on screen. The semi-finalists were selected based on the strength of their idea relating to the theme.

Re-inventing the way people view filmmaking, the contest had kicked off on May 8 and more information is available at www.mobifilms.net, according to an official release.

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