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Over the recent past, the International Film Festival of India (IFFI) has moved on from its traditional roots of being just a film festival that showcases films from both across the nation and globe, to one where there is a definite dialogue about the evolution of the craft on both these stages. And this being the centenary year of Indian Cinema, the festival that begins at the end of the month, will see a strong participation from the city given its tryst with films. Apart from the screening of two diploma films from Film and Television Institute of India (FTII), the festival will also showcase 27 films sent by National Film Archives of India (NFAI). Even the FFSI (Federation of Film Societies of India), which has a strong presence in the city through the Aashay Film Club, will be holding an open forum at the festival.
Prashant Pathrabe, Director, NFAI, says, "We had been in talks with the organisers of IFFI for the last three months about the kind of films that had to be sent for the festival. Since the focus was 100 years of Indian Cinema, the organisers wanted the NFAI to play a very important role in the type of films that went for the event. While the centenary package will feature films like Raja Harishchandra, which has recently been released as a DVD with a new musical score as a part of it, the other packages will be different." Other sections include Mystic Films, Retrospectives and Homage that have gone on to form the complete package.
Speaking about NFAI and its participaiton, says Shankar Mohan, spokesperson, IFFI, "They (NFAI) have been doing some really good restoration work in the recent years. The institute has probably one of the biggest collections of rare Indian films. It was an apt time to showcase some of their best preserved films. We did go back and forth a lot on the films but the package is now finally ready for the festival."