By Srikanth Kanchinadham. Posted on October 13, 2015
A total of 19 projects have been officially selected to participate in the NFDC Co-production Market 2015, including one invited project from IFP (Independent Filmmaker Project).
The projects picked this year include Kanu Behl's next film Agra, Nandita Das' biopic of Saadat Hassan Manto, DIFF directors Tenzing Sonam and Ritu Sarin's The Sweet Requiem and Gitanjali Rao's Bombay Rose. A mix includes mostly first & second time directors & the films come from all across the country in languages like Tamil, Kannada, Bengali, Assamese, Konkani, Hindi, Marathi & Sinhalese.
Kanu Behl's Agra, an Indo-French co-production, is a family comedy about a man who is madly in love with a girl and his battle to break free from his parents and all the chaos happening thereafter. This is Kanu Behl's second feature after the much acclaimed Titli, which released its theatrical trailer recently and is set for release later this month. Agra is one among the four titles that were selected for the Asian Project Market which runs alongside Busan International Film Festival.
Gitanjali Rao's Bombay Rose has also been selected for this year's Film Bazaar Screenwriters' Lab. Gitanjali Rao is a India's leading animators and has independently produced, directed and animated two award winning short films, Orange and Printed Rainbow. Printed Rainbow premiered at Cannes 2006, in competition at the Critic's Week. It went on to win the award for the Best Short film. Her last project, True Love Story was also at Cannes last year and has traveled to multiple film festivals across the globe.
Other notable films that are a part of this year's Co-production Market include Amit Masurkar's Newton. The film is being produced by Manish Mundra of Drishyam Films, who's recently backed such award winning Indie films like Masaan, Umrika, Dhanak among many others. Amit's previous film Sulemani Keeda received rave reviews and was screened at the Mumbai Film Festival, New York Indian Film Festival, Indian Film Festival of Los Angeles, London Indian Film Festival, MISAFF Mississauga, Zurich Film Festival, Oaxaca Film Festival in Mexico.
Aditya Vikram Sengupta’s Memories and My Mother has also made it to the 19 films that were selected for the Co-production Market. The director's previous film Labour Of Love won multiple awards including the Fedora Award at the Venice International Film Festival 2014, and two awards at the 62nd National Awards.
The list also includes Rishi Raj More's first feature project, Pirates. Rishi has worked as an associate and assistant director for The Lunchbox. His first feature Pirates, is being produced by Ritesh Batra’s Poetic License Motion Pictures. Pirates was also part of Sundance ScreenWriters’ Lab, India 2015.
The Poacher directed by Suman Ghosh is also selected for the Co-Production Market. Suman Ghosh is a National Award winning director whose film Footsteps starring Soumitra Chatterjee and Nandita Das won 2 National Awards in 2008. The director's other film Nobel Thief starring Indian megastar Mithun Chakraborty had its world premiere at the BIFF and was an official selection at the BFI, London Film festival. His film Kadambari won the best film at the recently concluded 4th Washington, DC, South Asian Film Festival. His latest film Peace Haven, was an official selection for the A Window on Asian Cinema section at the Busan International Film Festival.
Unread Pages directed by the twelve time National Award winner filmmaker Jahnu Barua is another film in the mix.
This year's edition of the Market also sees a Sinhala film being selected. Children of the Sun, is directed and produced by Prasanna Vithanage. The Sri Lankan filmmaker is known for the film Oba Nathuwa Oba Ekka (With You, Without You), which happens to be the first Sri Lankan film to have commercially released in India.
Fahad Mustafa's A Goat's Life has also made it to the market. Fahad has previously directed an Indian Hindi documentary titled Katiyabaaz. Shot in Kanpur, the film focuses on the problem of power theft and illegal electricity connections across the city. The film won the Best Film in the India Gold Section at the 15th Mumbai Film Festival and also won the ward for Best Investigative Film at the 61st National Film Awards. Katiyabaaz also premiered at the Berlin International Film Festival 2013.
M S Prakash Babu is best known for his feature known for his work in Kannada feature film Attihannu mattu Kanaja. The film co-produced by NFDC was officially selected in the Competition and nominated for ‘Tiantan Award’ 2015, 5th Beijing International Film Festival. His latest film Nigudha Manushyaru has also made it to the market this year.
Here are the list of the other films that have been selected for the NFDC Co-production Market 2015:
Aasai Mugam (Tamil)
Director: Arun Karthick
Producer: Prabhu Ramasamy, Dream Warrior Pictures
Bhavarth (Konkani, Portuguese)
Director: Laxmikant Shetgaonkar
Producer: Entertainment network of Goa (ENG)
Dhaar (Hindi, English)
Director: Salil Jason Fernandez
Producer: Salil Jason Motion Pictures
Meeting the Sumdees (English, Urdu)
Director: Michael McNamara
Producer: Markham Street Films
Sandhya (Marathi, Hindi)
Director: Mukti Krishnan
Producer: 7Seas Films, Ravi Kambhoj
Unromantic Woman (English, Hindi)
Director: Joan Carr-Wiggin
Producer: David Gordian, Paragraph Pictures Inc.
The market gives an opportunity to independent filmmakers to pitch their projects to potential financial partners from across the world. The market will be organised at the Goa Marriott Resort between 20-24 November 2015.
The event has consistently brought out noted projects with the market expanding to include projects from the South Asian neighbours namely Nepal, Bhutan, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Bangladesh and Srilanka from 2011. With the introduction of Open Pitch sessions this year, the market will see selected filmmakers pitch their projects to a curated audience of national and international producers, financiers and sales agents.
The Market has proved to be a common ground between aspiring filmmaker and reputed film producers. Many noted films have come out of the Co-Production Market over the years with the likes of Chaitanya Tamhane’s Court, Anand Gandhi’s Ship of Theseus, among many others.