December 22, 2006 – December 28, 2006
The Suchitra Bangalore International Film Festival, was held for a week from December 22 to 28, 2006 with all the trappings of any major film event of its kind. There was the main Cinema of the World section featuring some of the most outstanding films made in various parts of the world over the past couple of years, in addition to separate sections for World classics, Indian classics and Kannada classics, retrospectives of celebrated Directors and Technicians, Seminars, workshops, media get together, parties and the whole works. A large contingent of eminent film makers from India and abroad, Film festival organizers, Film Society activists participated in the festival as special delegates. More than 100 films were screened during the festival. The festival was dedicated to the memory of Kannada Cultural Icon and Actor par excellence Dr. Rajkumar who passed away during the year. The festival was attended by more than 2000 delegates, a large part of it being that of the new generation of film enthusiasts was the silver lining to the whole concept of organizing the event.
The Festival committee, was headed by Girish Kasaravalli, one of the leading filmmakers in the world today, and a high- profile committee of eminent advisers drawn from various walks of life was the guiding force behind the festival. An organizing committee headed by veteran journalist and Chairman of the Karnataka Media Academy, V. N. Subba Rao, took up the responsibility of putting the festival together. N. Vidyashankar, a well-known film academician and President of the Suchitra Film Society, was the Executive Director, while N. Shashidhara, a cineaste and Secretary of the Suchitra Film Society, was the Festival Co-ordinator. Various committees were also in place to take charge of specific responsibilities. H. N. Narahari Rao, Vice-President of the Federation of Film Societies of India (SR), actively associated himself with the Festival as its Programme Director. And so was Dr. Vijaya,Vice President, Suchitra Film Society, who is well known in cultural and academic circles. Sri B. N. Subramanya, Film Journalist took the role of the Media co-ordinator.
The festival of such a scale could not have been possible without the support of the State Government and the Film Industry. Karnataka Government and the Kannada Film Industry stood solidly behind the organization. The contribution of distinguished Officials like Mr. Vittalmurthy, Mr Tagore, Mr Swain and private support from Mr. Sunder, Mr. V. H. Suresh and Mr. Madhavamurthy was enormous.
Curtains went up for the festival at a formal inaugural ceremony at the Chowdiah Memorial Hall on Thursday, December 21, 2006 at 4 PM, when the Hon’ble Chief Minister of Karnataka, Mr. H. D. Kumaraswamy, unveiled the festival logo after a brief and glittering cultural show designed by the Veena Virtuoso, Dr Suma Sudheendra. On the dais were eminent film maker and Member of Parliament Mr. Shyam Benegal, who is also the President of the Federation of Film Societies of India, Mr. M.V. Krishnaswamy, the doyen of Kannada Cinema and the first Kannadiga to hold the prestigious post of the Director of Film Festivals, Govt. of India, Mr. I. M. Vittal Murthy, IAS, Secretary, Kannada and Culture, Information and Tourism, Govt. of Karnataka, Mr. Tallam Nanjunda Shetty, President, Karnataka Film Chamber of Commerce and Mrs. Parvathamma Raj Kumar, leading producer of Kannada films and industry leader. A galaxy of foreign and Indian delegates who attended the festival on special invitation were presented to the distinguished audience comprising of leading Stars, Producers, Directors and Technicians, Top Govt. Officers, Cultural Celebrities, leading Citizens and Cineasts. The inaugural film, “Mama’s Guest”, from Iran was screened as a part of the event.
The festival showcased different genres of films from various corners of the world including films from far and near, Argentina, France, Hungary, Norway and Sri Lanka to name a few.
The activities started unfolding from the next day. The films flourished on screens at the three venues and so did the presentation of cast and crew of films on show in the Festival and specially the invited delegates.
On Friday, December 22, 2006, Mrs. Parvathamma Raj Kumar, inaugurated the Kannada section of the Festival at the Kailash Theatre at 10.30 AM, in the presence of Star Actor Mr. Shiv Raj Kumar, and other dignitaries of the Kannada Film Industry. “Bettada Hoovu” which was the landmark Kannada film Directed by the eminent Late N. Lakshminarayan, was screened on the occasion.
Mr. Shyam Benegal released the book “Most Memorable Films of the World”, written by Mr. H. N. Narahari Rao, a pioneer of the film society movement and the Vice President of the Federation of the Film Societies of India (FFSI). FFSI General Secretary and Film critic Mr. Sudheer Nandgaonkar spoke about the book on the occasion.
Felicitation to Mr. V.K. Murthy, the ace Cinematographer and his interaction with the audience next day was a historical event which scaled the intellectual and emotional involvement of the participants to new heights.
All in all the festival had 10 different sections: Cinema of the world, World Classics, Contemporary Indian Cinema, Indian Classics, Retrospective of Films by Japanese Maestro Nagisa Oshima, Tribute to Cinematographer V. K. Murthy, Felicitations to Cinematographer S. Ramachandra, French Comedies, Retrospective of Kannada Films and short films by various filmmakers across the globe. The detailed list of the films screened at the festival is enclosed.
Well-known Director V. K. Prakash presented a lecture demonstration on Digital Technology, World Cinema’s latest innovation. Innovative one-minute short films titled “Cineku” by the ace Indian cinematographer Mr. Ramachandra Babu, which are unique three shot narrations, were screened along with some short films made by the students of Film and Television Institute of India, Pune. Screening of short films Curated by Rada Sesic, Film Festival Consultant from Rotterdam Film Festival, Denmark, and Indian independent short filmmakers, Ashok V Raman, Babu Eshwar Prasad, Hariharan K, Kiran Subbaiah, Prakash Babu, Prasanna Ramaswamy, Pushpamala, Srikanth Prabhu, Surekh was another highlight of the festival.
A number of press meets, open forums, discussions, and interactions with the delegates, media and the film lovers were held during the week. Varied topics on films mediated an open forum discussion between the invitees and the delegates.
Topics for discussion included :
Relevance of Film festivals
“What are the problems faced by filmmakers, while making films in Indian dialects?”
Film reviews, Criticisms and Critical appreciation
“Can we economize the costs without compromising the aesthetics?”
Regional films and National identity
The festival closing ceremony was another spectacular event. In addition to the warm felicitation to the eminent Cinematographer Sri Ramachandra Aital the presentation of cast and crew of the aptly chosen closing Kannada film ‘Nenapirali’ was a big draw for the day.
The festival was indeed a memorable event not only for the organizers but also for many audiences for whom the concept of the film festival was a novelty.
List of Specially invited delegates from India and abroad
- Hunt Hoe, Film Maker, Canada
- Milena Andonova, Film Maker, Bulgeria
- Rada Sesic, Programme Advisor, Rotterdam International Film Festival
- John Bosters, Music Director, Netherlands
- Tom Kovan, Cinematographer, Australia
- Somaratna Dissenayake, Film Maker, Srilanka
- Prasanna Jayakodi, Film Maker, Srilanka
- Quazi A.R., Festival Consultant, Spain
- Sathyanarayana (Satish), Film Maker, Hyderabad
- Ahsan Mujid, Film Maker, Guwahati
- Archana Bhattacharjee, Producer & Music Director, Guwahati
- Gajendra Ahire, Film Maker, Mumbai
- Dr. Biju, Film Maker, Trivandrum
- Radhakrishna, Film Producer, Trivandrum
- K.S. Sasidharan, Director, NFAI, Pune
- Santhanam S., Dy. Director, Directorate of Film Festivals, New Delhi
- Sudhir Nandgaonkar, Gen. Secretary, FFSI, Mumbai
- U. Radhakrishnan, Secretary, FFSI, Northern Region, New Delhi
- Premendra Mazumdar, Festival Consultant, Kolkata
- Rwita Dutta, Film Critic, FIPRESCI, Kolkata
- Thangaraj, ICA Forum
- Director, Chennai International Film Festival, Chennai
- Ravindar, Film Artiste, Director, Kochi International Film Festival
- B.H.S.S. Prakash Reddy, Secretary, FPSI, Southern Region, Hyderabad
- V.T. Subramanian, FFSI, Tirupur
- Prof. R.S. Rajan, FFSI, Madurai
- V. Srinivasan, Madras Progressive Film Society, Chennai
- S. Murali, Chitradarshan Film Society, Chennai
- Dr. Chiranjeevi, Hyderabad Film Club, Hyderabad
- Thammareddi Bharadwaza, Film Maker, Hyderabad
- Farooq Musafi, FILCA, Kerala
- Prasanna Ramaswamy, Film Maker and Critic, Chennai
- Ramachandra Babu, Film Maker and Cinematographer,Trivandrum
- Dr. Mohan Agashe, Actor, Pune
Festival Cultural Partners
- Secretary, Kannada & Culture Dept, Govt. of Karnataka
- ICAForum, Chennai
- Karnataka Film Chamber of Commerce, Bangalore
- Karnataka Film Directors’ Association, Bangalore
- Karnataka Cinematographers’ Association, Bangalore
- Karnataka Television Association
- Federation of Film Societies of India
- National Film Archives of India, Govt. of India
- Directorate of Film Festivals, Govt. of India
- Alliance Francaise, Bangalore
- LACE Films, Bangalore
- Max Mueller Bhavan, Bangalore
- British Library, Bangalore
- Bangalore Film Society, Bangalore
- Collective Chaos, Bangalore
- Indian Council for Cultural Relations, BangaloreBharatiya Vidhya Bhavan, Bangalore
- AOTS Allumini Association, Bangalore
- Ananya, Bangalore
- Forsee Multi Media, Bangalore
- Centre for Film and Drama, Bangalore
- Chitra Samooha
- Naaku Thanthi
Festival Advisory Committee
- Dr. Ananthamurthy U. R, Jnanapeeta Award Winning Author, Bangalore
- Ms Arundati Nag, Rangashankara, Bangalore
- Sri Bhaktavtsala M, Sharada Movies, Bangalore
- Sri Chiranjeevi Singh, IAS, (Retd), Bangalore
- Sri George T. J. S, Editorial Adviser, Indian Express, Bangalore
- Sri Girish Karnad, Jnanapeeta Award Winning Author, Bangalore
- Sri Jayaram M B, General Manager, Corporate Communications, KPCL, Bangalore
- Sri Madhava Murthy M. R, ED & CEO, SN Informatics Pvt Ltd, Bangalore
- Sri Mahesh Joshi, Director, Doordarshan Kendra, Bangalore
- Sri Mohapatra K. K, Oriya Writer & Commissioner of Income Tax, Mangalore
- Sri Nagaraj B. S, Managing Director, Indium Development Pvt Ltd, Bangalore
- Dr.Pradhan Gurudatt, Chairman, Karnataka Anuvada Academy, Bangalore
- Sri Prakash Belawadi, Film Maker, Bangalore
- Ms Prema Karanth, Eminent Film Maker, Bangalore
- Prof. Radhakrishna K.E, Principal, Surana College, Bangalore
- Pandit Rajashekar Mansur, Chairman, Karnataka Sangeet Natya Academy, Bangalore
- Justice Sadashiva A. J, Former Judge, High Court of Karnataka, Bangalore
- Sri Satyanarayana K, Kannada Writer & Commissioner of Income Tax
- Sri Shanta Kumar K. N, The Printers (Mysore) Pvt. Ltd, Bangalore
- Dr. Siddalingaiah, Chairman, Kannada Development Authority, Bangalore
- Sri Sriganesh M. V, Executive Director, Abcon Services, Bangalore
- Sri Srinivas G Kappanna, Chairman, Karnataka Nataka Academy, Bangalore
- Dr. Sudarshan Ballal H, Director, Manipal Institute of Nephrology & Urology, Bangalore
- Dr. Suma Sudheendra, Veena Artist, Bangalore
- Sri Sunder G V, Chartered Accountant, Bangalore
- Sri Swain S. P, Commissioner of Income Tax, Bangalore
- Sri Tagore K.V. R, IPS
- Sri Vasudev S.G, Eminent Artist, Bangalore
- Sri Venkatachalapathy, Chairman, Karnataka Shilpakala Academy, Bangalore
- Dr. Visweswara, Director, Jawaharlal Nehru Planetorium, Bangalore
- Sri Visweswara Bhat, Managing Editor, Vijaya Karnataka, Bangalore