The 49th edition of the International Film Festival of India will open with the world premiere of ‘The Aspern Papers’ in the presence of its international star cast and crewmembers.
Set in Venice in the late 19th century and based on Henry James’ eponymous novella, ‘The Aspern Papers’ is a story of obsession, grandeur lost, and dreams of Byronic adventures.
A delegation representing this film arriving in Goa will comprise the lead actor Jonathan Rhys-Meyers, lead actress and Golden Globe winner Joely Richardson, and Oscar nominated actress Julia Robins, besides actress and daughter of Roman Polanski, Morgane Polanski, actor Nicolas Hau and director, Julien Landais.
This year Country Focus segment at the mega film festival will showcase films from Israel, while State Focus segment will be dedicated to Jharkhand.
Every year, the IFFI also recognises the contribution of a filmmaker and presents Lifetime Achievement Award to him or her, showcasing some of his/ her best films. This year Dan Wolman from Israel will be honoured with the award.
The IFFI 2018, which will be held in Goa from November 20 to 28, will showcase 212 films from over 68 countries, reflecting diversity of taste. The international competition section at this film fiesta includes 15 films out of which three are Indian. This section itself represents films produced and coproduced by 22 countries.
The international competition jury comprises John Irvin, Adrian Sitaru, Polish director Robert Glinski, Anna Ferraioli Ravel and Indian filmmaker Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra.
Furthermore, festival kaleidoscope section will carry 20 critically acclaimed international films that have been to major film festivals, majority of which being multiple award winners.
The world panorama section will include 67 films, which are specially curated for the festival. This section will include four world premieres, two international premieres, 15 Asia premieres and 60 Indian premieres.
This year the world panorama section will also present 15 films, which are Oscar submissions from respective countries.
Every year, the IFFI features country focus segment that brings out the cinematic excellence and contributions of a particular country. At the IFFI 2018, the country focus will be dedicated to Israel. Ten films in collaboration with the consulate general of Israel in Mumbai have been selected for this segment.
The opening film for the country focus section is ‘The Other Story’ by Avi Nesher. Important celebrities from Israel including the famous Israeli Actor, Alon Aboutboul will visit Goa during the festival. The Indo-Israeli coproduction seminar is also slated to be held on November 22.
A state focus section has been proposed for the 49th edition of the IFFI 2018. This section will focus on the films of one of the Indian states, thus shedding light on the art and culture of the particular state. Jharkhand has been selected as the state focus state for this film festival, while Jharkhand Day will be celebrated on November 24 as part of the festival. Movies in the Jharkhand package include ‘Death in the Gunj’, ‘Ranchi Diaries’ and ‘Begum Jaan’, besides others.
Sketch on screen – animation film package – is another section at the IFFI 2018, screening around three international feature length films done in collaboration with Indian studios.
The ‘Open Air Screenings’ is another highlight of this nine-day film festival, wherein a large screen is put up in a vast open area. This year, as an extension of the Khelo India Branding, Indian sports biopic will be screened including ‘Gold’, ‘Mary Kom’, ‘Bhaag Milkha Bhaag’, ‘1983’, ‘MSD: The untold story ‘and ‘Soorma’.
The IFFI also collaborates with the International Council for Film, Audiovisual Communication, Paris, to present a special ICFT prize consisting of the UNESCO Gandhi Medal to a film that reflects the ideals promoted by the UNESCO.
This year, 10 films will be showcased for selection of a film to be presented with this coveted award.
The master class section as well as in-conversation section will feature participation of several renowned celebrities from the film industry including Prasoon Joshi, Dan Wolman, Sreekar Prasad, Anil Kapoor, Sumit Israni, Boney Kapoor, Arjun Kapoor, Jahnvi Kapoor, David Dhawan, Varun Dhawan, Rohit Dhawan, Jairaj, Kaushik Ganguly, Shaji Karun, Srijit Mukherjee, Sridhar Raghavan, Sreeram Raghvan, Anupama Chopra, Rajiv Masand, Bhawana Somaaya, Jason Hafford, Meghna Gulzar, Leena Yadav and Gauri Shinde.
A retrospective of films of the recipient of Dadasaheb Phalke Award is showcased during every IFFI. This year, actor Vinod Khanna received the award posthumously. The IFFI will be showcasing some of his best films including ‘Achanak’, ‘Lekin’ and ‘Amar Akbar Anthony’.
The homages section will pay tribute to the film personalities of our country, who have passed away, this year. This year, homage will be paid to Shashi Kapoor, Sridevi, M Karunanidhi and Kalpana Lajmi.
In the international homage, tribute will be paid to British production designer Terence Marsh; Czech-American film director, screenwriter, actor Milos Forman; and British film editor, Anne V Coates, best known as the editor of David Lean’s epic film ‘Lawrence of Arabia’ (1962), for which she won an Oscar.
A special package for visually impaired children/ special screenings with audio description will be organised for the children who are visually impaired.
The festival will showcase the movies ‘Sholay’ and ‘Hichki’ under this section.
This year will also witness a special presentation of Tunisian films at the IFFI 2018.