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Osian makes a comeback, and with a bang !


SAURABH KUMAR SHAHI | New Delhi, July 11, 2012 21:17
Tags : Osian Cinefan | |

Osian makes a comeback, and with a bang !If there is one expression that really states the present status of the famous Osian Cinefan then it is the Persian expression, Dair Ayad, Durust Ayad. Yes, after a painful gap of two years, this famous carnival of Indian, Asian and Arab Cinema is all set to sweep Delhi off its feet once again.

In the last decade, this festival, the only one of its kind in India, has managed to bring in some riveting cinematic experience from Asia and Arab world to the Indian audience. In fact, in its previous editions, the festival managed to introduce directors and other cinema personalities that later went ton to make it big in the world cinema scene. If directors like Wong Kar-wai, Im Kwon-taek, Fatih Akin and Nuri Bilge Ceylan managed to find their place in Indian living-rooms, a lion share of the credit must go to Osian Cinefan too. Also, several of the films that won in competitive section of the event, went on to either win awards at other prestigious festivals or were shortlisted. One of the examples is the Israeli film 'The Band's Visit', that won several award world over after it won recognition at the Osian Cinefan.

The festival has seen its shares of disappointments too. From the failure to remain afloat to the death of its director general, Mani Kaul, Osian has had its share of downs too. However, what is exciting is that it has managed to reorient its resources and promises to return with a bang.

In the 12th outing of Cinefan, there are several exciting themes that are going to be explored. But the predominate theme this time around remains 'Freedom of Expression'. Considering some of the political events that have shaped the world in the last few years, the theme appears timely. Under this theme, several classic cinemas as well as some of the new ones that have been banned at some point or other will be shown to the audience. Prominent among these films are Pier Paolo Pasolini's  Salo, Shuji Terayama's Emperor Tomato Ketchup and Jafar Panahi's This is Not a Film. The festival will also see a discussion on the theme, prominent participants of which include celebrated Iranian-American academician of Arab and Iranian Studies, Professor Hamid Dabashi, as well as Panah Panahi, son of Jafar Panahi.

Apart from the above mentioned theme, the festival this time is also doing a sort of retrospective of Japanese revolutionary filmmakers Koji Wakamatsu and Masao Adachi whose work in the field of Japanese Pink Cinema is highly acclaimed and celebrated. Both these directors, who were part of the Japanese extreme left movement, have been blacklisted and hence wont be present in the festival in person. However, some of their longtime aides are expected to attend the festival.

The festival will also pay tribute to director Mani Kaul, who had been attached to the festival in its last several outings before his untimely death by cancer.

The festival promises to bring some very exciting experimental films in both Indian as well as Asian category, including the opening Japanese animation film Asura that is being termed as a revolutionary step in traditional animation landscape because of its use of “watercolours in motion”    technique. Other interesting films include Dariush Mehrjui's Environment, Bassam Chekhes' Waiting for P.O. Box and Johnnie To's Romancing in Thin Air.

In the Indian section, Sharat Katariya's 10ML Love, Ajay Bahl's B.A. Pass, Amitabh Chakraborty's Cosmic Sex and Prashant Bhargava's Kite are competing for honours.

The festival will run from 27th July to 5th August and films will be shown separately at Siri Fort Auditorium and Blue Frog Lounge in Mehrauli.   

(Disclaimer: The views expressed in the blog are that of the author and does not necessarily reflect the editorial policy of The Sunday Indian)
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Issue Dated: Feb 5, 2017