The second edition of the Guwahati International Film Festival (GIFF 2018) began on Thursday on October 25. The week-long festival will end on October 31 and will witness the screening of more than 100 films from 50 countries.
With the theme ‘Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam’, the focus of the GIFF 2018 is the ASEAN region, a no surprise considering the persistence of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Sarbananda Sonowal led BJP government in Assam to project the Northeast as the 'Gateway of Southeast Asia’.
Organised by Jyoti Chitraban in association with Dr. Bhupen Hazarika Regional Government Film and Television Institute (DBHRGFTI), GIFF 2017 was a major success and the organizers are hopeful of the 2nd edition as well. It may be noted that Jyoti Chitraban has the distinction of being the first State-owned film studio of India.
The festival was inaugurated by Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal. The opening film of the GIFF 2018, was 'Bhoga Khiriki’ (Broken Window) by renowned filmmaker Jahnu Barua. Produced by Priyanka Chopra under the banner of Purple Pebble Pictures, it is also the first Assamese film produced under its banner.
Speaking at the inaugural ceremony, Chief Minister Sonowal said that the festival was a great beginning to integrate the world and the society. “The theme of the festival Vasudeva Kutumbakam teaches us to live together, work together and grow together. Film is the medium which plays a crucial role in fulfilling this aim".
Further terming the artists as messengers of God, Sonowal said that "through their works, artists could connect with the society and develop positivity. “Films are not just a medium to earn money, it is more of a tool to promote positivity, cooperation, coordination among countries and societies,” Sonowal said.
Ambassador of Lithuania Julius Pranevicius, Ambassador of Serbia Vladimir Maric, Ambassador Designate of Latvia also graced the occasion.
Talking to Republic TV on the sidelines of the festival, Pabitra Margherita, Chairman of Jyoti Chitraban said:
"GIFF is a platform to promote film tourism in Assam and Northeast apart from giving a stage to the film enthusiasts of the region to interact with global experts of the industry".
The festival will also witness master classes and interactive sessions with internationally acclaimed experts. It's worth mentioning that the Assamese film industry started way back in 1935, with Rupkonwar Jyoti Prasad Agarwala’s ‘Joymoti’ and over the last 8 decades have made an immense contribution to Indian Cinema.