The 18th annual the New York Indian Film Festival (NYIFF) will showcase more than 70 films and documentaries focusing on different themes like gay rights, women issues, youth and terrorism. The film festival which aims to connect the filmmakers and artists from the Indian subcontinent to American viewers will run from May 7 to May 12.
NYIFF will feature 78 films, short films and documentaries in 11 languages- Hindi, English, Marathi, Tamil, Malayalam, Telugu, Tulu, Konkani, Bengali, Assamese and Kannada.
Aroon Shivdasani, Executive and Artistic Director of the not-for-profit arts organisation Indo-American Arts Council, which organises the film festival, while talking to PTI revealed the nature of films. Aroon said the films would focus on diverse themes like women issues, gays, lesbians, bisexuals, transgenders (LGBT), children & teenagers struggling with realities of life and terrorism.
NYIFF Director Aseem Chhabra told PTI that that the popular film festival provided an excellent opportunity to the audiences in New York to experience the cinematic excellence which emanates from the subcontinent.
Aseem, who is the author of Shashi Kapoorâ€™s biography Shashi Kapoor: The Householder, the Star, said that the team had discovered wonderful and talented directors whose work will be showcased at the film festival.
â€œI am very excited with the line-up this year. There are some wonderful new directors that we have discovered and whose work we will be showcasing this year. The festival is an opportunity for people to experience some brilliant new work coming out of Indiaâ€™â€™, Aseem told PTI.
Interestingly, NYIFF will open with the US premiere of Marathi film Nude, which is directed by Ravi Jadhav. The film festival which will also showcase Pakistani, Bangladeshi and Sri Lankan films will premiere Rajkummar Rao-starrer Omerta on the closing night.
The Hansal Mehta directorial is based on the life of Islamic fundamentalist Omar Saeed Sheikh.
Some of the major highlights of this yearâ€™s festival include a tribute to Sridevi and Shashi Kapoor. NYIFF 2018 will also retrospect the films made by Ismail Merchant, an Indian born producer and James Ivory, an American director.
A documentary titled Breaking the Bee will be premiered at the New York Indian Film Festival. The documentary focuses on the increasing dominance of Indian-American kids in spelling bees competition.
(With agency inputs)