Sunday, April 21, 2013

UK based short film “Love at First Sight” to be showcased at LISFF 2013

Written and directed by Mark Playne, "Love at First Sight" is an international entry received of late. A heart-warming story of a lonely young man and his increasingly creative attempts to attract the attention of the girl of his dreams, it is a must-see for all singles, romantics and anyone who has ever felt ignored.....

An Indo Spanish UK Production, "Love at First Sight" is a remarkable film on Lonliness and Love. According to Mark Playne, “I was keen on a debut short to choose a script that would have the widest appeal. Irrespective of nationality or culture, we’ve all be in love. We’ve all felt ignored. We’ve all wondered if we’d be more attractive if we were somehow different. We all fear loneliness. Kids are born into the world and cry - fearing they might be alone. Old people die - knowing they are alone. It’s a grim reality and life has enough sad endings - we are surrounded by them.” He continued, “Just watch the news. I wanted this story to be light hearted - uplifting and tell people (young and old) with hope that loneliness is only a temporary state - that love and companionship could be around the very next corner.”

Speaking about his cast, Mark found Francesca Binefa’s profile on a casting website. The lead Shane Zaza like the title of the film was cast at First sight. Since Mark wanted the film to travel across the oceans to various Film Festivals, he decided to make his debut film – Silent - without Dialogue. He says, “I wanted to avoid anyone anywhere feeling that it was a foreign film. I didn’t want to be in a situation where we needed sub titles. I wanted to allow the film to work on a subconscious level. Without dialogue I feel we are more open and free to interpret what is happening based on our own experiences - and tell the story with our own subconcious dialogue and meaning.”

Winner of 7 International Film awards including Shin Young Kyun Arts Foundation special Award - Asiana (Korea), Best Debut Film - Jury Award- I've seen films (Italy), Best Romantic Comedy - Jury Award - Calaveras, California (USA), Best Director - Jury Award - Hollywood Feel Good Film Festival (USA), Best Short - Audience award - Newport Beach, Los Angeles (USA), Best Comedy - Jury Award - Trimedia, Colorado (USA), Best Short - Jury Award- Corinth WCD (Greece) and Nominated for Best Comedy - Shanghai International (China), the story is based on the experiences of the Director who lived in Madrid for over a year in the late 90’s. “It is based on a true story form that time in my life. The girl whose window was opposite mine across the street had the habit of opening her curtains and shutters the same time as me each day. She’d give me a little smile and it was something I looked forward to each morning,” said Mark Playne about how he conceived the story.

Friday, April 19, 2013

Are all "Dowry Harassment" cases true? Shaurya Singh’s film at LISFF will shatter the myths and clear the Illusions

Is marriage an Illusion? Do all women who screech "Dowry Harassment" are actually victims? Or they make a scapegoat of their husbands and in-laws? A heart wrenching short film by Shaurya Singh that will shatter the myths and clear the "ILLUSIONS" is one of the entries at LISFF 2013.

Directed by Shaurya Singh, the film takes you on a journey from USA to India and how a prospective groom with dreams of a blissful conjugal life ends up as a victim of the draconian law of 498A which is also termed as legal terrorism in Indian legal circles. The film explores a real life story of a guy who has a stable IT job in the Silicon Valley of the US. Well settled in his career, his family wants him to settle down and find a bride for him. With dreams of a blissful conjugal life, the hero starts his marital life in the US of A. However, his joy is short lived and he alongwith his parents are falsely implicated in "Dowry Harassment" case when he refuses to give in to their illogical demands. What happens later forms the crux of the story.

Speaking on the subject, director Shaurya Singh says, “Just as there are helpless women being tortured for dowry by their in-laws, there are severals who are being harassed on false charges of seeking dowry, mental harassment and cruel behaviour. Many innocent elderly citizens are being dragged into court unscrupulously by their daughters-in-law and their families under allegations of Section 498 A of the Dowry Prohibition Act and Section 406 of the IPC.”

Starring Ankush Sood, Amrisha Ahuja, Manoj Bakshi, Ajay Singh, Vanya Joshi and others, Illusions is an eye-opener into the real life cases of how some women’s are actually using the 498A as a tool for their benefit and advantage. “The agony of the dowry case troubles the innocent family’s to such an extent that most of the members of the family go into social and mental depression as well as psychological problems. Not only are their lives shattered by such a false case, but the women are also let off even without being charged when the court eventually finds that the case filed was false. And this is another bad step which is totally in favour of the women’s,” summed up Shaurya.

Promoted by Eon Films and O.M Filmz and with additional support of Films & TV World, LISFF is an attempt at bringing the best in shorts from around the world to Indian audiences, showcasing a genre of movies which generally is inaccessible to the mainstream audience. It is also a platform for Indian filmmakers to reach out to a larger audience,’’ said Mahua Mazumdar, Festival Coordinator, LISFF. “Soon gaining popularity as a major film event happening in the Heart of India in Bhopal, the Lakecity International Short Film Festival will showcase a host of quality movies from around the world in the presence of prominent guests and the cine enthusiasts,” added Ms. Mazumdar.

The scenario might change in near future for short film makers

When Life teaches one his Last lesson, who stands for whom? Received today The Last Lesson - A fiction on modern day relationship, commitments and conflicting psychologies. Directed by Sanjib & Sumit Banerjee, this film revolves around the concepts of love, loyalty & lust. Starring Anand Gupta, Dipanyita Ganguly, Nelufar Reza, Garima Agarwal and Sanjib Banerji,

Produced by Anand-Dipanyita Creations under the banner or Unity Creations with story and screenplay by Sumit Banerjee, The Last Lesson is a short film that highlights the issues faced by modern couples in today’s times. A sensitive sensuous film, this is Anand Gupta’s debut and has done a commendable job.

Talking about his debut film, Anand Gupta says, “Well, we were toying with this idea of making a film with Sanjib and Sumit when this plot struck us. I was excited right from the word go and have put in my 100% to give my best shot. Same goes to say of my co-stars Dipanyita and Nelufur without whom I would not have been comfortable doing some real intense scenes. In all, I am happy the way the film has shaped up.”

According to Anand, making a short film is not that easy as one might think it to be. On the contrary, it’s more difficult as many investors and producers refrain from investing in short films since they don’t have a market place for recovery. At the same time, the story has to be gripping enough. “Even we were facing the same problems and thus decided to produce it ourselves. However, things might change in near future as even many big directors like Sudhir Mishra have got into short film making. He recently teamed up with his muse Chitrangda Singh once more after Inkaar to make Kirchiyaan, a 13-minute short film which was released online.”

Going by statistics available, on an average, 2,000-odd short films are made in India annually. “However, some of these films are not shown anywhere. It is very unfortunate. Hence, we have planned a pan India presence by going to all short film festivals and showcase our film. At the same time, we have targeted major international festivals abroad and have sent in our entries there as well,” Anand signs off. 

Whether the scenario will change or not, however no one seems to be complaining. At the time of uploading the news, we got information of how Kuch Alagsa is working on bridging the gap between short film makers and coming together to create a feature film that would have a pan India release as well. If this format works, it will be a way forward to other indie short film makers to recover their investment as well as showcase their project to the audience at large.

Monday, April 15, 2013

LISFF joins hands with Darbhanga International Film Festival

After successfully attending the Imphal International Short Film Festival 2013 from March 23 at Imphal and promoting the festival there, Lakecity International Short Film Festival has tied hands with Darbhanga International Film Festival (DIFF). DIFF is the first ever International Film Festival at Mithilanchal in Darbhanga district which is the cultural capital of Bihar & core heart of Mithilanchal.

Providing a forum and a place for promotion of DIFF at our home event in Bhopal, the organizers of DIFF and Darbhanga Film Club (DFC) will be going that extra mile to exchange their award winning entries at our festival and vice versa.

Quoting on this tie up, Meraj Siddiqui, the chairman of the festival says, “It’s a great honour for us at DIFF and DFC to have a strategic tie-up with LISFF where we are going to promote our festival. We are going to use this set-up for exchange of ideas and information to make our festival better as well as help LISFF in gaining its foothold by promoting the same on our website and amongst our participants as well.”

According to Ankit Tandon, Festival Programmer - LISSF 2013, “The Lakecity International Short Film Festival is proud to tie up with Darbhanga International Film Festival which not only caters to the short films section but also has a platform for feature films and documentaries as well. We are going to provide a forum and a place for promotion of DIFF at our home event in Bhopal, and let them take an opportunity to talk about their festival to our participants and attendants. Similarly, we will be promoting our festival during their 2014 event.”