Aurangabad International Film Festival
The Aurangabad International Film Festival (AIFF) is organized every year in the month of February by MGM Department of Film Arts, NATH Group and Aurangabad Regional Center of YashwantraoChavanPrathishthan.
The festival aims to showcase the best of films produced recently and formerly, in India and other parts of the world, to the city of Aurangabad and its film buffs. This festival is a platform for aspiring filmmakers, technicians, artists and young film enthusiasts to encourage them to learn and understand artistic as well as technical aspects of cinema. This festival also aims to become a medium to project Aurangabad and Marathwada internationally; as the city and region provides many opportunities to the film production hub, cultural center in state of Maharashtra.
AIFF aspires to promote tourism of the region among Indian and international tourists and to create a networking Centre for local talents from Marathwada region to connect with filmmakers, film scholars, technicians from India and abroad. AIFF also aims to highlight and promote Marathi cinema nationally and globally.
Indian Film Competition:
7th AIFF was organized for five days, with variety of programmes catered to its audience. The important part of festival programme was the competitive section of contemporary Indian feature-fiction films. Nine films from different Indian languages competed for many awards including the top prize of Best Film which carries a cash prize of Rs. 1 lakh! Besides this there were award categories of Best Director, Best Screenplay, Best Cinematographer, Best Editor, Best Sound, Best Music, Best Actor (Female) and Best Actor (Male).
The competition was adjudged by an international jury. This jury was headed by acclaimed and award winning filmmaker Sunil Sukthankar. Other jury members were film critic and secretary of FIPRESCI-India PremendraMazumder (Kolkata), film producer and festival director Jitendra Mishra (New Delhi), Composer, Singer Songwriter & Concert Pianist Ariane Gray Hubert (France), actor NanduMadhav (Aurangabad).
FIPRESCI-INDIA Jury Award:
FIPRESCI International is an international federation of film critics. FIPRESCI-India is the association of Indian film critics and accredited to FIPRESCI International. This year AIFF hosted a 3-members FIPRESCI-India jury, who decided their prize for best debut film of directors from Indian and International films made in 2019. V. K. Joseph wasbe chairperson of this jury, joined by Namrata Joshi and Rekha Deshpande as other members.
The 7th Aurangabad International Film Festival was inaugurated on 5th February, 2020 in the presence of film fraternity and film enthusiasts followed by the screening of the Opening Film ‘Hellaro’ (India / Gujarati) by Abhishek Shah, the Golden Lotus National Film Awardee 2019. The prominent personalities attending the opening ceremony were popular Hindi filmmaker SriramRaghavan, filmmaker Abhishek Shah, actor-director Prasad Oak, actor-writer ChinmayMandlekar, filmmaker Om Raut, filmmaker DigpalLanjekar, artistic director Chandrakant Kulkarni, festival director Ashok Rane and many others.
Closing Ceremony, Lifetime Achievement Award & Awards Function:
The closing ceremony was held on evening of 09th February, 2020 wherein awards in Indian Competition, FIPRESCI-India Jury Prize, Audience Choice Award and Short Film Competition were announced and presented to the winners.
The Closing Film was an acclaimed film of 2019 and Oscar nominee, ‘Parasite’ (South Korea) directed by Bong Joon Ho.
Short Film Competition:
An exclusive competition of short films for the upcoming filmmakers of the Marathwada region of Maharashtra, of which Aurangabad is the major city was organized during the 7th AIFF. In this section 10 films were shown and winner was announced during the closing ceremony.
Master Class & Seminar:
Besides the film screenings, festival also organized other academic activities during these four days.
A Master Class by SriramRaghavan was held on Thursday 06th February at INOX. Filmmaker DnyaneshZoting was the moderator for the class.
A Seminar on topic of ‘इतिहासवसिनेमॅटिकलिबर्टी’ (History And Cinematic Liberty) was also held on Thursday 06th February at INOX, with panelists filmmaker Om Raut, filmmaker DigpalLanjekar, actor-director Prasad Oak, and actor-writer ChinmayMandlekar as the moderator.
An Audio-Visual Lecture on topic of of ‘महाराष्ट्राची६०वर्षेआणिमराठीसिनेमा’ (60 Years of Maharashtra State and Marathi Cinema) was conducted by director of Aashay Film Club Satish Jakatdar on Friday 08th February 2020.
A Seminar on topic of ‘स्त्रीदिग्दर्शक: जाणिवाआणिदृष्टिकोन’ (Female filmmaker: Understandings & Perspectives) was held on Saturday 08th February at INOX, with filmmaker panelists Gauri Shinde, Sumitra Bhave, Mrunal Kulkarni and Pratima Joshi, and actor MuktaBarve as the moderator.
Many artists from films in competition and other regional films attended the festival and had interactions with the audiences and press, which included actor-producer Dr. Mohan Agashe, actor-poet Kishor Kadam, filmmaker Sameer Vidwans, actor Anjali Patil, actor LalitPrabhakar, writer Arvind Jagtap, filmmaker ShivajiLotanPatil, filmmaker RajmumarTangde, etc,
This year the Poster Exhibition was dedicated to three legendary film personalities – Mrinal Sen, Dr.ShriramLagu,Dr. Girish Karnad. It was open atProzone Mall from 1st to 9th February 2020.
Film Appreciation Workshops:
The festival organizers also conducted film appreciation workshops in ten selected colleges at Aurangabad and encouraged students from colleges in the city and the surrounding places to participate in the festival by registering as delegates.