Having an inherent theme of ‘Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam’ meaning the whole world is one family, the 42nd edition of International Film Festival of India, IFFI began to welcome cine-lovers on Wednesday.
Bollywood star Shahrukh Khan inaugurated this ten-day magnanimous extravaganza in the presence of the Union Minister for Information & Broadcasting, Ambika Soni and the Chief Minister of Goa, Digambar Kamat.
Billed as the ‘Festival of Change’, it seeks to bring in novelty into the concept of the festival. IFFI has also signed an MoU with the Union Ministry of Tourism to promote the festival.
The Incredible India is the principal sponsor of the festival.
Renowned Filmmaker, A.K. Bir, while formally launching the IFFI catalogue on Tuesday, said that the festival is about celebrating life through cinema.
Being organized with an approximate budget of 10 crore rupees, the IFFI Director, Shankar Mohan said that this time it would be more people friendly.
Bollywood superstar Shah Rukh Khan today appealed to filmmakers to use the medium of cinema to fight feudal institutions and fascism in the country.
Khan’s fervent plea for honest efforts in filmmaking came as curtains went up on the 10-day long film festival.
Opening the festival, being held for the first time in Margaon city instead of the usual venue of Panaji, Information and Broadcasting Minister Ambika Soni called IFFI as the “people’s International Film Festival.”
“Don’t be afraid to fight feudal institutions and fascism. Don’t be afraid to destroy systems that kills our heart and soul. Don’t be afraid of forces that will finally kill our world,” said the Bollywood heartthrob, who apologized for wearing a suit and “not a Bermuda” to match with the profile of the tourist destination.
While praising India’s status as the world’s largest film industry, Soni said Indian cinema was yet to get the recognition it deserved.
“The Indian marketing section should make a difference by greater exchange in buying and selling of Indian and international films. We want to make it a people’s international film festival of India,” Soni said.
The opening ceremony, which was scheduled for 5 PM, was delayed by half-an-hour after Khan’s flight was delayed.
“We didn’t want to start the ceremony without Shah Rukh Khan,” Soni joked as the inaugural function finally got under way with the speech of Goa Chief Minister Digambar Kamat.
Celebrated French filmmaker Bertrand Tavernier was conferred the Lifetime Achievement Award at the opening ceremony.
The festival kicked off with the screening of ‘The Consul Of Bordeaux’ a Portuguese film by Fransisco Manso and Joao Correa.