India has been selected to be the official ‘Country of Honor’ for the Cannes Film Market this year. It is the first time the market is having an official country of honor and the new tradition will be continued annually with different nations at future editions.
But what does this really mean for India?
India and France are historical allies, so much so that they are considered to be “best friends” in the global arena. As India is celebrating its 75th year of Independence from British rule and the Cannes festival is also celebrating its 75th anniversary, this comes as a pleasant coincidence.
The market celebrations will kick off on May 18th at the Majestic Beach with an introduction from market executive directors Jérôme Paillard and Guillaume Esmiol and a welcome address from Anurag Singh Thakur, India’s Minister of Information and Broadcasting.
India will be prominently visible throughout the festival this year. Actor Deepika Padukone is on the jury for the main feature film competition. Indian filmmaker Shaunak Sen’s Sundance grand jury prize-winning documentary “All That Breathes” is showing as a special screening. And Indian auteur Satyajit Ray’s “Pratidwandi” (1970) and Aravindan Govindan’s “The Circus Tent” will be screened at the festival’s Cannes Classics strand. In addition, world premieres of a selection of Indian films will be held at the Olympia Cinema.
The India Forum will be the first event to open the market’s conference program, on May 19th. The panel discussion, “India: The Content Hub of the World,” will feature the Indian government’s secretary of the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting Apurva Chandra, Chair of India’s Central Board of Film Certification Prasoon Joshi, and veteran Indian filmmaker of “Lagaan” fame, Shekhar Kapur. R Madhavan’s upcoming film “Rocketry: The Nabi Effect” will also have its world premiere on May 19th at Cannes.
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Featuring in the market will be ‘Goes to Cannes’ a May 21st event in which Film Bazaar and India’s National Film Development Corporation will present their selection of feature films in post-production, still looking for sales agents, distributors, or festival exposure; and Cannes Next, where five Indian start-ups will showcase their projects through a dedicated pitching session, highlighting India’s latest innovations, on May 22nd. India will be part of the festival’s XR program.
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Also, on May 22nd, the MIB will join Indian professionals and talent at an animation-dedicated networking cocktail as part of the festival’s Animation Day.
This will definitely be a big boost to the entertainment sector of India and will provide an incredible platform to all professionals in the field.
Not competent enough to sit idle and stare as the world goes by, Pallavi is optimistic to a fault and believes in building her world on her own rather than depending on others to make things right.