2019 INDIAN FILM FESTIVAL OF LOS ANGELES ANNOUNCES AWARD WINNERS
Grand Jury Prizes Awarded To WIDOW OF SILENCE as Best Feature and THE FIELD as Best Short
IFFLA is widely recognized as the premiere showcase of groundbreaking Indian cinema globally. The festival took place April 11-14, 2019 at Regal L.A. LIVE: A Barco Innovation Center in Los Angeles, California with the gala presentations at the Ahrya Fine Arts Theater in Beverly Hills. This year’s lineup boasted 5 world premieres, 2 North American premieres, 2 U.S. premieres and 11 Los Angeles Premieres, with films presented in 9 different languages, and 50% of the lineup coming from female directors.
Director Praveen Morchhale’s WIDOW OF SILENCE took home the Grand Jury Prize for Best Feature. “We present the grand jury prize to a film that illuminates a condition that most of the world doesn't get to see and shines a light on the characters that live through it everyday,” said the Grand Jury of their decision. “This filmmaker's civic disobedience illustrates their love and compassion for their country and their people, and the craft of their filmmaking was beautifully wise and refined.”
“A layered portrait of a woman determined to pursue her needs and impulses,” the Grand Jury awarded their prize for Best Short to THE FIELD from director Sandhya Suri. “The film takes images that normally evoke a sense of fear and flips the narrative on its head redefining a new more empowered world for the female protagonist and exploring an often unseen story of a woman's drive and agency over her own body and life,” the jury added. “Set against a visually stunning landscape and beautiful photography of rural India, the filmmaker's adept storytelling comes to life flowing through rhythmic twists and turns imbued with both the mundane day-to-day life and desirous love.”
The audience awards went to Anand Patwardhan’s politically-charged documentary REASON for Best Feature, and BEBAAK (DYING WIND IN HER HAIR) as Best Short.
The 2019 narrative film jury included director Amman Abbasi (DAYVEON), Arcadia University media and communication professor Shekhar Deshpande, and Array vice president Tilane Jones. The short film jury featured director Amy Adrion (HALF THE PICTURE), director Andrew Ahn (SPA NIGHT, DRIVEWAYS), and producer Megha Kadakia (THE TIGER HUNTER, MISS INDIA AMERICA).
AWARD WINNERS: FEATURESGrand Jury Award - WIDOW OF SILENCE (director: Praveen Morchhale)
Audience Award - REASON (director: Anand Patwardhan)
Honorable Mention- TAKING THE HORSE TO EAT JALEBIS (director: Anamika Haksar)
AWARD WINNERS: SHORTSGrand Jury Award - THE FIELD (director: Sandhya Suri)
Audience Award - BEBAAK (DYING WIND IN HER HAIR) (director: Shazia Iqbal)
Honorable Mention - CIRCLE (director: Jayisha Patel)
The festival opened on April 11 with a tribute and moderated discussion with legendary Indian actress Tabu, paired with a screening of her latest film ANDHADHUN directed by Sriram Raghavan. Additional weekend highlights included director Ritesh Batra’s PHOTOGRAPH, unforgettable feature debut from director Ronny Sen CAT STICKS, moving family drama LOVE GOES THROUGH YOUR MIND directed by UCLA alum Ronak Shah, and the heartwarming family film CHIPPA directed by Safdar Rahman and starring LION’s Sunny Pawar. A TV-centric panel discussion BREAKING IN BROWN: MAKING IT TO SERIES IN TV’S GOLDEN AGE highlighting the work of South Asian actors, directors, writers and producers was also presented.
ABOUT IFFLANow in its 17th year, the Indian Film Festival of Los Angeles (IFFLA) is a nonprofit organization devoted to a greater appreciation of Indian cinema and culture by showcasing films and promoting the diverse perspectives of the Indian diaspora.
The four-day festival is the premiere platform for the latest in cutting-edge global Indian cinema and bridges the gap between the two largest entertainment industries in the world – Hollywood and India. The festival will showcase nearly 25 films from the Indian filmmaking community across the globe, host the highly anticipated Opening and Closing red carpet Galas, and the Closing Awards ceremony.
For more information: www.indianfilmfestival.org