53rd IFFI featuring special Manipuri Cinema section kicks off, biggest ever Manipuri delegate recorded this year

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Panaji: The 53rd edition of the International Film Festival of India (IFFI) kicked off with an exuberant opening ceremony this evening at Dr. Shyama Prasad Mukherjee Indoor Stadium, Goa University with acclaimed film actors including Ajay Devgan and Sunil Shetty among other eminent film personalities attending the evening.

The opening ceremony was a historic and a moment of pride for Manipur as Union I&B minister, Anurag Singh Thakur announced that the festival will feature a special section for Manipuri Cinema to mark its golden jubilee celebration.

At least 10 Manipuri films, 5 each of feature and non-feature films will be showcased in the special section apart from the non-feature ‘Beyond Blast’ directed by Ratan Saikhom which will be screened in Indian Panorama section.

Speaking during the inaugural function, union I&B minister Anurag Singh Thakur announced that it is for the first time in the history of IFFI, Manipur is having a special section.

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Anurag Singh pointed out that the first Manipuri film ‘Matamgi Manipur’ even went on to win the national film award.

The Union Minister for Information & Broadcasting and Youth affairs & Sports, said that his vision is to make India the most sought after destination for film shoots and post-production backed by the talent of the people and innovation of industry leaders.

With the screening of opening feature film Ishanaou directed by Padmashree award winning director Aribam Syam Sharma, and Ratan Thiyam; The Man of Theater in Non-feature film section along with other films, the cinema enthusiast will get a taste of rich cultural heritage, fierce storytelling, dance, music, traditions and theaters from the state of Manipur.

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Feature films including Ishanaou directed by accalimed Aribam Syam Sharma, first film directed by a Manipuri Brojendragee Luhongba directed by S.N. Chand, Loktak Lairembee by Haobam Paban Kumar, first Manipuri film Matamgi Manipur directed by Debkumar Bose, Phijigi Mani directed by Oinam Gautam have been curated by the MSFDS for screening in the special Manipuri cinema section.

Meanwhile in the non-feature category, films such as Ratan Thiyam:The Man of Theater directed by Oken Amakcham and Nirmala Chanu, Ilisha Amagi Mahao directed by Ningthauja Lancha, Look at the Sky directed by Ashok Veilou, The Silent Poet directed by Borun Thokchom and The Tainted Minor directed by Romi Meitei will be screened.
Notably, this year’s edition of IFFI also recorded the highest number of delegates from Manipur, over 20 in number, with many film makers, critics, officials coming for the film extravaganza.

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For the first time, Manipur is also opening a pavilion at Film Bazaar organise alongside IFFI by the National Film Development Corporation, with the prime focus to lure both national and international film crew to come and shoot their film in the State to tap the enormous potential of film tourism.

At the 53rd IFFI, Manipur is the flag bearer of cinema in the northeast region with over 25 delegates making the strongest Manipur delegate in bet at IFFI , Goa, comprising filmmakers, Indian Panorama Jury, young creative minds, officials of the MSFDS, Film Forum Manipur, Cine Artistes & Technician Association, film critic, film journalist and film actors, lead by MSFDS Secretary, department of Art and Culture, Govt of Manipur.

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