North East Package Impressed at MIFF

The 18-film package from the eight Northeastern States made a strong mark at the Mumbai International Film Festival (MIFF), 2018, which recently concluded in Mumbai.

Manipuri filmmaker Bobo Khuraijam’s ‘Ima Sabitri’, based on the life and works of legendary theatre actress of Manipur, Sabitri Devi, bagged the Best Film Award in the under 60-minute documentary category. The festival also paid homage to late filmmaker Altaf Mazid, which was wonderful news for the Northeast region.

Two Assamese directors’ films were also selected in the competition section of MIFF. One was Jahnu Barua’s ‘The Gutsy Morning’ in the international competition section and the other one was Sanjeev Parashar’s ‘Living the Natural Way’ in the national competition section.

There were two National Award-winning filmmakers from the region who were members of the festival jury. While Manipur’s Haobam Pabankumar was a jury member of the international competition section, Assam’s Prabin Hazarika was a member of the national selection panel.

Union Ministry of Information and Broadcasting regularly organises only two international film festivals – India International Film Festival (IFFI) at Goa annually and Mumbai International Film Festival (MIFF) biannually. While IFFI is the festival of mainly feature films, the MIFF is the festival of documentary, short fiction and animation films.

This time, the North East Package had 18 films from the eight NE States. The Package included this time – ‘19/87’, Meghalaya, director : Wanphrang K Diengdoh, Short Fiction (36 minutes), ‘When Thunders Roll’, Mizoram, director : Napoleon RZ Thanga, Documentary (26 minutes), ‘On A Roll’, Tripura, director : Sanjib Das, Documentary (26 minutes), ‘Story Of A House’, Nagaland, director : Sesino Yhoshu and Sophy Lasuh, Documentary (5 minutes), ‘Auto Driver’, Manipur, director : Meena Longjam, Documentary (30 mins), ‘Thang Ta’, Manipur, director : Ronel Haobam, Documentary (28 mins), ‘After’, Manipur, director : Bobo Khwaijam, Documentary (27 mins), ‘Clipped Wings’, Assam, director : Suraj Duara, Documentary (26 mins), ‘Saving Grace’, Assam, director : Hemanta Das, Documentary (26 mins), ‘Symphony of Silence’, Assam, director : Dip Bhuyan, Documentary (48 mins), ‘Old Man River’, Assam, director : Gautam Bora, Documentary (53 mins), ‘By-Lane 2’, Assam, director : Utpal Datta, Documentary (10 mins), Dr Bhupen Hazarika, Assam, director : Surjya Hazarika, Documentary (30 mins), ‘Mobile Theatre’, Assam, director : Bidyut Kotoky, Documentary (55 mins), ‘Purbaraag’, Assam, director : Charu K Hazarika, Short Fiction (12 mins), ‘Cuckoo’, Assam, director : Jaicheng Jai Dohutia, Documentary (38 mins), ‘Sikkim Soccer Girls’, Sikkim, director : Tribeny Rai, Documentary (34 mins), and ‘40 Years Through Lenses’, Arunachal, director : Apak and Sanju, Documentary (30 mins).

The North East Package in the MIFF had begun in 2006 and Guwahati-based journalist Samudra Gupta Kashyap was its curator. The package contained 11 films.

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