The Golden Elephant ICFFI 2017 opened on a colourful note with spectacular performances of children at Shilpkala Vedica where film actors Zara Wasim of ‘Dangal’ fame and South India actor Poonam Kaur were felicitated last night by Children’s Film Society, India (CFSI) and Telangana Government which have organised the week-long festival.
Before the screening of films began at various theatres in Hyderabad and elsewhere in Telangana state today, the Jury members had a brief meeting which was presided by me in capacity as the Festival Director. The topic of the discussion was on how to judge the films for the awards.Popular actor Amala Akkineni and Jury member was of the view that the Jury should focus on the story of the film while reviewing it for the award and not on creative aspects. Amala is the Chairperson of Asian Panorama Jury.Leading Television actress Sakshi Tanwar said, “We have to encourage children in film making and appreciate their point of view. If they express a problem through their films, we (Jury) should focus on that and view the films from their point of view.” She heads the Jury in Little Directors category in which children’s films are made by children themselves.Another prominent Jury member Dr Madhu Chopra, mother of actor Priyanka Chopra and film producer, said, “I look at children’s films radically and I do not want to treat them (children) as imbeciles (idots),” Dr Chopra is the Chairperson of International Jury Live action category.Actor Dia Mirza, who is the chairperson of International Shorts Jury category will be in the city too. Other prominent members of the Jury from abroad include Michael Harbauer, eminent Festival Director in Europe, Wolfgang Mundt, Journalist, Pierre Assouline, Theatrical and International Distributor, Elizabeth Muskala, Programmer and Consultant, Children’s content.
The Festival opened with film titled “School Chalega” made by Ameet Prajapati. This film tells the story of a 12-year-old deaf and mute boy Goonj who is left alone on the crowded Dadar Railway station in Mumbai and comes on the radar of a child trafficking gang, However, Goonj is rescued finally by another child after the gang is busted.Some of the films screened in festival theatres today include Molly Monster (Animation/Germany), Phantom Boy (Animation/France), Hanuman Da Damdar (Animation/India), Chocolate (Asian Panorama/Iran), Oddsockeaters (Animation/Czech Republic, Slovakia, Crotia), Hell of a wedding (Animation, Iran), Appu – the crazy boy (children’s world/India), Bravo Biju (Children’s world/ India), Big and Little (CW/Switzerland), Jill and Joy’s winter (Finland).Other films screened were Poorna (India), Wendy (Germany), Beelay’s Diary (India), Doctor Proctor Bubble in the bathtub (Norway), Vanilla, Strawberry and Chocolate (india), In the forest of Huckybucky (Norway), Siv Sleeps Astray (Holland, Sweden), Storm letters of Fire (Belgium), Barkley (Taiwan), Becoming Who I was (Korea), Ballad from Tibet (China), Horizon (India).