November 11, 2013
WB CM assumes the centrestage at the inauguration of 19th Kolkata International Film Festival
The 19th edition of the Kolkata International Film Festival (KIFF) was inaugurated on Sunday. The eight-day festival will screen 189 films from 63 countries.
KIFF, an accredited film festival of the International Federation of Film Producers Association, Paris (FIAPF), screened renowned director Rituparno Ghosh`s Taak Jhaank (Sunglass) as the inaugural film. Eight of Ghosh`s films, including Unishe April, Dahan, The Last Lear and Chitrangada, would be screened as a special tribute during the festival.
Bollywood legend Amitabh Bachchan inaugurated the festival in the presence of a galaxy of stars, including Shah Rukh Khan, Kamal Haasan, Prosenjit Chatterjee, Jaya Bachchan, Mithun Chakraborty among several others. Bachchan recalled Bengal`s contribution to Indian cinema and described how Bengali literature has enriched and inspired Indian cinema over the years.
West Bengal Chief Minister Ms. Mamata Banerjee said that the festival will pay tribute to several Bengali films that completed their Golden Jubilee this year. The focal theme of this year`s festival would be South East Asian movies, she said.
In memory of legendary singer Manna Dey, who passed away last month, the festival`s theme song featured lyrics from his popular Bengali song Jibone Ki Paabo Na.
Malayalam filmmaker and Dadasaheb Phalke Award winner Adoor Gopalakrishnan`s works would also be screened this year. A special segment will feature nine of his films. The film festival would also pay special tributes to international actors and directors including American actor Burt Lancaster (to mark his 100th birth anniversary), Australia-born American filmmaker Billy Wilder and Japanese filmmaker Nagisa Oshima.
Chief Minister Ms. Mamata Banerjee announced that the State Government has launched a “special medical insurance scheme“ for technicians of the Tollywood film industry. She also announced that the government will start a housing scheme for the recipients of Banga Bibhushan awards. Supriya Devi, legendary actress, became the first recipient of this scheme.