The 5th Jagran Film Festival commenced with a ceremony on September 22 at the PVR in Andheri West, Mumbai. The festival got off to a gala start with the ceremonial tradition of lighting a lamp by internationally acclaimed Indian actor Irrfan Khan as Chief Guest along with the renowned Bollywood actress, Neetu Chandra, Veteran Script Writer-Director Vinod Pandey, Renowned Screenplay Writer Sanjay Masoom, Strategic Consultant, Jagran Film Festival Manoj Srivastava and Mr. Vinod Srivastava of the Jagran Group. The presence of many other eminent personalities from the entertainment industry added to the charm of the much awaited festival and enthralled the cine-goers who not only witnessed the grand opening but also got a glimpse of the Jagran Film Festival’s journey so far.
The festival began with a 106 minute film ‘The Woods Are Still Green’. The screening marked the film’s Indian premiere and was attended by none-other-than Michael Kristof, the lead actor of this anti-war drama who also presented the intro to the film. This much anticipated Austrian-Slovenian coproduction is set during the World War I. Directed by acclaimed Slovenian film director Marko Naberšnik, the film is shot in original locations from the frontline of the First World War and marks the 100th anniversary of the historic war.
The seven day film festival is dedicated to world peace and features a notable selection of classic as well as contemporary cinema from all over the world. The lineup for the opening day also included Asian premiere of Jack Zagha Kababie’s 91 minute Spanish film ‘One For the Road’, followed by Mrityunjaya Devvrat’s 160 minute Hindi film ‘Children of War’ and Tomislav Mrsic’s 107 minute Croatian film ‘Cowboys’ showcased at PVR Andheri. During the screening of “Children of War” Actor Raima Sen and Director Mrityunjaya Devvrat were spotted promoting their film.
At the Cinemax Versova, Day 1 saw a historic opening and the film that opened the 100 year anniversary of the First World War was equally historic, Robert Bresson’s 1962 film ‘The Trial of Joan of Arc’. The 65 minute French film had won the Special Jury Prize at the 1962 Cannes Film Festival.
The day also featured in Sir Richard Attenborough’s 183 minute biopic ‘Gandhi’ made in 1982; a screening that commemorated the vast and unforgettable contribution of the legendary director who passed away in August this year. Besides, Omung Kumar’s 122 minute modern-day biopic ‘Mary Kom’ capturing nuances of Olympic bronze medalist’s life featured in as well. The lineup of films tracing journeys of real life heroes from historic to the modern day era proved just right to mark the inauguration of 100 years of First World War.