Imaging Asia celebrates Asian films, culture in Delhi

New Delhi, Aug 21 (Calcutta Tube) Film lovers in the capital can next week look forward to four days of serious and quality cinema from across Asia thanks to ‘Imaging Asia‘, a festival that will also showcase folk performances and art.

The Network for the Promotion of Asian Cinema (NETPAC) will commemorate 20 years of its inception with a four-day conference on the culture and politics of Asian cinema, a festival featuring 30 award-winning movies, traditional folk performances from the continent and art exhibitions in five venues across Delhi Aug 18-22.

Announcing the anniversary celebrations at the Instituto Cervantes Wednesday, writer Aruna Vasudev, president of NETPAC, said: ‘The festival, ‘Imaging Asia’, this year will be a multi-faceted exposition of cinema, discussion, traditional formats of story-telling that predated cinema in Asia before the Lumiere brothers brought it to the continent from Europe in the late 19th century (1896) in India and art.’

She said the festival ‘will project a complete image of Asia by bringing all aspects of its cinematic history and movements into focus’.

The festival will screen four Indian movies, ‘Mr and Mrs Iyer’ by Aparna Sen, ‘The Servile’ by Adoor Gopalakrishnan, ‘Barbed Wire’ by Bappaditya Bandopadhyay and ‘The Lady of the House’ by Rituparno Ghosh.

‘We want more co-productions in Asia, common resource pools to make movies, greater distribution of Asian movies and we need to accelerate the new movements in Asian cinema that began 20 years ago. Even two decades ago, not all Asian countries could boast of their cinema, but now even countries like Thailand are winning the Golden Palm at the International Film Festival in Cannes,’ Vasudev said.

The four-day conference and screenings will be presented by NETPAC and Confederation of Indian Industry at the Indira Gandhi National Centre for the Arts, Instituto Cervantes, Alliance Francaise, India Habitat Centre, India International Centre and Azad Bhavan.

It will be supported by the Indian Council for Cultural Relations, UNESCO, IGNCA, Max Mueller Bhavan and the Habitat Film Club and the public diplomacy division of the ministry of external affairs.

Seven panel discussions to be attended by filmmakers, critics, actors and writers from Asia and Europe will focus on the specificity of film cultures and on the need to recognise and respect diversity while defining cinema, the politics of governing cinema’s evolving identity in the context of globalisation and the shifts in technology against the dynamic landscapes of Asia.

Some of the sessions include ‘Globalising Asian Narratives: Localising the global, Orientalism and National Identity’, ‘New Cinema, Old Masters: Access and Dissemination’, ‘Festival Face-Off: Rethinking Film Festival’ and ‘Film Literary: Developing an Asian Film Pedagogy’.

Nearly 35 renowned film personalities from China, Indonesia, India, Sri Lanka, Iran, Iraq, Japan and Bangladesh, among others, will address the conference.

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