Friday, 11 November 2016

All roads leading to National Children’s Film Festival 2016 in Jaipur

Just two more days to go. The countdown has begun for the second edition of National Children’s Film Festival, to be held in Jaipur.

In the first edition of the NCFF, my main aim was to promote film making for children. When I was the festival director for the previous film festival, The Golden Elephant, to curate a section of children’s film made in India, I saw shortage of films for children. I was scouting for good films, but the selection committee was not able to zero in on good numbers to make a separate India section at the festival. That gave me a reason to ponder whether we have that culture in the country where quality films are being made for children in the market.

The introspection also led to the fact that CFSI being the children’s film making organisation, also has the mandate to foster this kind of culture among film makers in the country.  So, we conceptualized the NCFF, the first edition of which was held in Delhi in 2014, which received a good response.

Celebration and colour at our first National Children's Film Festival 2014 in Delhi

The festival had a carnival type of ambience and children enjoyed the movies, after which the cast and crew also did a workshop with them. Many film makers also participated and parents of the children audience were also very happy with the whole experience. So, with the first edition, we set the tempo both for the children audience and their parents to make them attracted towards this exclusive content for children through these Children’s films as well as to push the community of film makers to make more films as well as utilise this platform to showcase their films and get an opportunity to interact with the audience.

The first edition of the festival had ‘Swachta’ as its theme with environmental concerns at the forefront. We are taking that moment forward in the second edition too. As we had decided that this festival should be a traveling festival and reach to the children audience and film makers both, we decided to choose Jaipur, which has a very vibrant culture and the city is also emerging as a film destination.

Jaipur is a good venue to host children’s films and towards that objective we invited entries and got very good response and we have selected around 40 films. And this time, we have the support of the state government in giving us 10 theatres across the city including multiplexes and stand-alone cinemas.

In the first edition, we screened movies in only three theatres in Delhi. We want the children to have a theatrical experience, which is the main goal for us in spreading the children’s films movement. We should have children’s films playing in the theatres, where children can walk in for free with their parents and have that great experience.

We are looking forward to around 50,000 school children participate in the film festival from Nov 14 to 16. CFSI is also holding film making workshops and open forums on the side lines of the film festival.

Come, enjoy the films and have fun!

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