Selected films may not be recent because of pandemic: Matthan

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The feature film jury of the Indian Panorama section of the ongoing 51st International Film Festival of India noted that ‘Saand ki Aankh’, the opening film of this section is a motivating film, reflecting women empowerment in rural India, and was hence selected.

Following the inauguration of this section on the second day of IFFI, the chairman of the Jury, John Mathew Matthan said that out of the

180 films, which applied under the feature film category, altogether 20 films were selected for screening at the annual mega film festival.

Speaking further Matthan said that the jury was not concerned as to whether most of the films they saw dated back to 2019 or not. “These films could have been a year old and not the recent ones, due to the pandemic situation,” he noted, adding that he and his jury members were expected to just select the films from the lot handed over to them by the Directorate of Film Festivals.

The chairman of the non-feature jury of Indian Panorama, Haobam Paban Kumar stated that keeping cinema alive during the ongoing corona pandemic was of paramount importance. “We received applications of 143 non-feature films for this section, out of which 20 non-feature films were selected,” he added, pointing out that the jury has requested the Directorate of Film Festivals to change the term non-feature films to documentary films, as most of the non-feature films, which they watched were of 100-minute duration and above.

‘Paanchika’ was the opening non-feature film under the Indian Panorama section.

John Mathew Matthan, who is known for producing commercial films like ‘Sarfarosh’ (1999) starring Aamir Khan, and ‘Shikhar’ (2005) starring Ajay Devgn said that he is preparing to make a sequel of ‘Sarfarosh’. “However, I can’t say whether it will be my next project due to the current pandemic situation,” he stated, adding that he is currently working on the script and other aspects like production, and once the pandemic levels out, he will be able to take a decision on the same.