Big B, SRK to be part of 25th KIFF inauguration


Kolkata: Superstars Amitabh Bachchan and Shah Rukh Khan along with other big names of Bollywood will grace the opening of the 25th Kolkata International Film Festival on November 8.

The festival will be inaugurated by West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee at Netaji Indoor Stadium.

Satyajit Ray’s ‘Goopy Gyne Bagha Byne’ will be the inaugural film of the festival on its 50th year of release and Germany will be the focus country this year, Information and Cultural Affairs secretary Vivek Kumar told reporters here.

As many as 42 films from Germany will be screened in the festival, he said.

Big B, SRK and Jaya Bachchan had been coming to the inaugural ceremony for the past few years as the chief minister wants to bring the film festival in the domain of public by roping in cinestars, state PWD Minister Arup Biswas said.

Kumar said altogether 367 films – including 214 feature films and 153 short-documentary works – from 76 countries will be screened during the eight-day festival.

In the international competition section, the best film will be given Rs 51 lakh and the best director Rs 21 lakh along with Royal Bengal Golden Tiger Trophy.

“We think the Rs 51 lakh and Rs 21 lakh prize money in international competition section could be one of the highest in the world,” Kumar said.

In the homage section, six films of Bernardo Bertolucci and one film each of Mrinal Sen, Girish Karnad, Vidya Sinha will be screened, he said.

“To bring back the glory of celluloid era, six Bertolucci films on 35 MM will be screened in Sisir Manch and renovated Radha Studio, now called Cinema Centenary Building, during the festival days,” Kumar said.

KIFF Chairman Raj Chakraborty said that films from countries like Syria, Bhutan, Azerbaijan will also be screened in the festival to “make people aware about the trends in world cinema”.

The retrospective section will showcase films by German director Alexander Kluge and Slovak director Dusan Hanak, Kumar said.

Eminent German film director Volker Schlondorff will attend the ‘Masters’ Class’ section and speak on ‘Adapting literature and working with actors’ issue.

Eminent film director and screen writer Kumar Shahani will deliver the Satyajit Ray Memorial lecture on November 11 on the topic of ‘Future of the Individual’.

For the first time in KIFF, two 3D films will be screened, Minister of State for Culture Indranil Sen said.

To commemorate the 25th year of KIFF, an exhibition on the journey of the film festival since inception, will be inaugurated on November 9.