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    Home > Film Festivals & MarketsSundance 'Film Forward: Advancing Cultural Di...

Sundance 'Film Forward: Advancing Cultural Dialogue' to begin its India journey at FICCI Frames 2012

Tuesday, March 13, 2012 12:49:47 PM (IST) | Rajesh Kumar Singh, Bollywood Trade Editorial


Sundance Institute collaborates with Mumbai Mantra Media Ltd, The American Center in New Delhi, Taj Enlighten Film Society and Whistling Woods to bring FILM FORWARD to Mumbai, New Delhi, Aligarh, Noida and Gurgaon.
It’s a program that promotes cultural dialogue through independent documentary and narrative films. It will travel in India from March 15 to 22, 2012.  It includes 10 films, with filmmaker appearances and workshops at multiple venues in these five cities. All FILM FORWARD screenings are free of charge. The programme will kick off with the screening of SENNA at FICCI Frames 2012 on 15th March, 2012, and then go on to the other venues across India. A consortium of local cultural and government organizations will support the initiative in India including: Taj Enlighten Film Society, Whistling Woods International, Aligarh Muslim University, Amity University, Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan, Epicenter Gurgaon, FICCI Frames, Habitat World at India Habitat Center, Hauz Khas Village, Jawaharlal Nehru University.

A full schedule of FILM FORWARD screenings and events in India is available at
“It is exciting to expand our relationships with the vibrant community in India as we mount this multi faceted cinematic program,” said Keri Putnam, Executive Director of Sundance Institute. Filmmakers Asif Kapadia (SENNA) and Linda Goldstein Knowlton (SOMEWHERE BETWEEN) will be in attendance to participate in Q&A’s, discussions, workshops and meet-and-greet events with the different communities in the select destinations in India. Sundance Institute’s Meredith Lavitt, Associate Director, FILM FORWARD; Jacqueline Carlson, Manager, FILM FORWARD; and Joseph Beyer, Director of Digital Initiatives will be in attendance.
The films participating in the FILM FORWARD program represent a powerful exploration of universal themes that provide an avenue for greater cultural understanding. All 10 films collectively illustrate coming-of-age stories, explore identity and reveal the transformation process, both political and personal.
FILM FORWARD is an initiative of Sundance Institute and the American President’s Committee on the Arts and the Humanities in partnership with the National Endowment for the Arts, the National Endowment for the Humanities, and the Institute of Museum and Library Services.
ANOTHER EARTH / USA (Director: Mike Cahill) — After the discovery of a duplicate Earth, tragedy strikes, and the lives of these strangers become irrevocably intertwined. When one of them is presented with the opportunity to travel to the other Earth and embrace an alternative reality, which new life will they choose?  Cast: Brit Marling (also a co-writer), William Mapother, Matthew-Lee Erlbach.
BEGINNERS / USA (Director: Mike Mills) — BEGINNERS imaginatively explores the hilarity, confusion, and surprises of love through the evolving consciousness of Oliver, whose life is rocked by two announcements from his elderly father: that he has terminal cancer, and that he has a young male lover. Cast: Ewan McGregor, Christopher Plummer, Melanie Laurent
BRAN NUE DAE / Australia (Director: Rachel Perkins) — This musical, set in the Summer of 1969, tells the story of a young man who flees the Catholic mission where he is studying to join the priesthood. He journeys across Australia on a life-changing journey that ultimately leads him back home.  Cast: Rocky McKenzie, Jessica Mauboy, Geoffrey Rush.
BUCK / USA (Director: Cindy Meehl) — BUCK profiles famous “horse whisperer” Buck Brannaman, tracing his life from an abusive childhood to his career as a world-renowned horse handler and trainer. By teaching people to communicate with horses through instinct, not punishment, he frees the spirit of the horse and its human comrade.
GRBAVICA / Bosnia and Herzegovina (Director: Jasmila Zbanic) — GRBAVICA explores the painful long-term effects of war on a Bosnian woman and her daughter as they struggle to make a life in post-war Sarajevo.  Removing the veil from the ultimate taboo of the war in the Balkans, the use of rape as a weapon, the film reveals that the post-war denial of this war crime is as devastating as the crime itself.  Cast: Mirjana Karanovic, Luna Mijovic, Leon Lucev.
THE GREEN WAVE / Germany (Director: Ali Samadi Ahadi) — Ali Samadi Ahadi’s timely documentary reveals how Iranian civilians reacted to the 2009 Iranian Presidential elections.  Using actual footage of the protests as well as interviews with Iranian bloggers and political leaders, Ahadi paints a compelling portrait of a nation on the brink of revolution.
ON THE ICE / USA (Director: Andrew Okpeaha MacLean) — Two Alaskan teenagers deal with guilt and a web of deceit after accidentally killing a friend in a fight that got out of control. With their future in the balance, the two boys are forced to explore the limits of friendship and honor. Cast: Frank Irelan, Adamina Kerr, John Miller.
SENNA / UK (Director: Asif Kapadia) —The story of Ayrton Senna, perhaps the greatest race car driver who ever lived, is an epic tale that literally twists at every turn. Facing titanic struggles, he conquered Formula One and became a global icon who was idolized in his home country.
SOMEWHERE BETWEEN / USA (Director: Linda Goldstein Knowlton) – SOMEWHERE BETWEEN tells the story of four teenaged girls adjusting to life in the US after their Chinese birth parents are forced to part with them due to China’s “One-Child” policy. The film provides an intimate look into the lives of teenage adoptees as they come to terms with their unique identities.
UNFINISHED SPACES (Directors: Benjamin Murray, Alysa Nahmias)— Fidel Castro invites 3 exiled architects back to Cuba to finish work on art school they started 40 years ago. Featuring intimate footage of Fidel Castro, the documentary offers a remarkable view into Cuba’s past, present, and future.

(Rajesh Kumar Singh is Editorial Consultant for Festivals and Markets for He is a filmmaker, critic and market analyst)

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Tags : Sundance Institute, All FILM FORWARD, SENNA, FICCI Frames 2012, The Green Wave, Senna, Somewvere Between, Unfinished Spaces

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