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Shabana Azmi to be honoured ‘Icon of Indian Cinema’ at Jagran Film Festival

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Shabana Azmi
Shabana Azmi. Wikimedia

Mumbai, Sep 17, 2017: Acclaimed actress and activist Shabana Azmi will be honoured as an ‘Icon of Indian Cinema’ at the closing ceremony of the Mumbai edition of the eighth Jagran Film Festival here next week.

The ceremony will be held on September 24 in the presence of members of the Indian film fraternity, said a statement.

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Manoj Srivastava, the Festival’s strategic consultant, said: “It’s a matter of pride for the Festival that such a great actor who hasn’t perhaps got her due as yet, is being honoured with the ‘Icons of Indian Cinema Award’.”

Shabana has featured in movies like”Ankur”, “Nishant”, “Arth”, “Shatranj Ke Khiladi”, and emerged as one of the icons of parallel cinema in India. She has done her fair share of mainstream films too.

The Jagran Film Festival took off in Delhi before moving on with the journey to cities like Kanpur, Lucknow, Varanasi, Patna, Ranchi, Dehradun, Bhopal, Indore and Meerut. The journey will culminate in Mumbai between September 18-24. (IANS)

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‘It is time to see the world through a Feminist Gaze’, says Shabana Azmi

Jio MAMI hosted a brunch to discuss and inspire women equality and quality films, which was graced by Manisha Koirala, Shabana Azmi, Kiran Rao, Anupama Chopra, Sayani Gupta, Kriti Sanon, Neha Dhupia and many more

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Shabana Azmi
Shabana Azmi. Wikimedia

Mumbai, October 17, 2017: Veteran actress Shabana Azmi on Monday said it is the time people started seeing the world through a “feminine gaze”.

The pro-equality actress was speaking at “#F for Freedom MAMI” segment of Jio MAMI 19th Mumbai Film Festival.

“I am very delighted that MAMI this year is concentrating on making women’s work more visible. I think it is high time that we started to see the world through feminine gaze,” she said.

Jio MAMI hosted a brunch to discuss and inspire women equality and quality films, which was graced by Manisha Koirala, Shabana Azmi, Kiran Rao, Anupama Chopra, Sayani Gupta, Kriti Sanon, Neha Dhupia and many more.

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Manisha Koirala, who has been vocal about gender equality, said she was happy that JIO MAMI is recognizing women’s contribution.

“Tumhari Sulu” actress Neha Dhupia said that things aren’t changing but with a little initiative, things will change in coming times. “Just because there is a women-centric film after 30-40 others release, everyone feels that things are changing but they are not changing just yet.”

Kiran Rao, the lady behind the initiative, expressed that main objective was to inspire women and get them in mainstream cinema, either in front or behind.

“The initiative was started two years ago, to inspire females to be part of the film industry, not just tell their stories. We want females to join film industry as writers, actors, technicians, creative arts and camera persons as this will improve the condition of women,” said Kiran.

Film critic Anupama Chopra said that the issue of equality in the film was not just limited to Bollywood, “it is rampant everywhere”. (IANS)

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Marriage in Islam is Not Made in Heaven, it is a Contract: Says Veteran actress-activist Shabana Azmi

Last week, she welcomed the Supreme Court's ruling on triple talaq saying the judgment is a victory for brave Muslim women in the country

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Shabana Azmi. Wikimedia

August 29, 2017: Veteran actress-activist Shabana Azmi believes marriage is not made in heaven in Islam and that it’s a contract.

Sharing an article on “Madrassas in Uttar Pradesh to teach ‘correct ways of divorce'”, Shabana tweeted on Tuesday: “Marriage is not made in heaven in Islam. It’s a contract. We need a model ‘nikahnama’ in which clauses of the contract are drawn up fairly.”

Shabana, who is married to veteran writer-lyricist Javed Akhtar, has always been vocal about a lot of issues.

Last week, she welcomed the Supreme Court’s ruling on triple talaq saying the judgment is a victory for brave Muslim women in the country.

She also runs the NGO Mijwan Welfare Society. The foundation was started by her father Kaifi Azmi.

The NGO was launched with the goal of creating employment opportunities for women, and reviving the art of chikankari embroidery. (IANS)


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Singapore South Asian Film Festival 2017 to Celebrate South Asian Films This September

The SGSAIFF 2017 will be an amalgamation of exciting new voices and stories which richly bring out the culture of the South Asian countries.

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Singapore South Asian Film Festival
The Singapore South Asian Film Festival aims to establish closer ties between the global city of Singapore and the rapidly-developing countries of South Asia (representative image) Wikimedia
  • Singapore South Asian Films Festival to be held from September 1 to 10
  • The festival aims to support budding film-makers and promote the diversity and richness of the South Asian Diaspora through films
  • Various feature films, short films, and documentaries will compete and be showcased at the event

Singapore, August 25, 2017: The inaugural Singapore South Asian Film Festival (SGSAIF) will present movie fanatics in Singapore with a first-of-its-kind chance to experience the diversity of South Asian cultures on screen. With an impressive package of feature films, short films and documentaries, the festival which will begin from September 1 in Singapore, aims to pack a lot into ten days.

26 films are set to compete for the Best Feature Film, Best Documentary Film and Best Short Film at the fiesta which will be held from September 1 to 10.

The festival will have world premiers and screenings of over 35 feature films, short films, and documentaries from the Indian, Sri Lankan, Bangladesh, Afghanistan, Nepal film industry. Additionally special screenings from Singapore will also make it to the choicest list of films.

Brilliant masterpieces from the film industries of South Asia have made it to the special screenings’ list. These films include,

  • Leena Yadav’s ‘Parched’
  • Afghani director Siddiq Barmak’s ‘Osama’, which was the recipient of the Golden Globe for Best Foreign Film
  • Adoor Gopalakrishnan’s ‘Once Again’
  • And the critically acclaimed ‘A Yellow Bird’ by Singaporean director K. Rajagopal

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Apart from showcasing films, SGSAIFF will also hold workshops, master classes, panel discussions, and music performances. Apart from them, the event will also felicitate distinguished personalities from the industry for their outstanding contribution to cinema.

According to a report by IANS, the festival will also honor lyricist-writer Javed Akhtar with the South Asian Literary Award and his actress-wife Shabana Azmi with the South Asian Woman of the Year Award. Actor Abhay Deol will also be felicitated with the South Asian Icon of the Year Award.

Singapore South Asian Film Festival
Javed Akhtar and Shabana Azmi will also be felicitated at the event. Wikimedia

The festival is being organized by a global streaming service for world independent films called Muvizz, with aid from the Institute of South Asian Studies, National University of Singapore and the High Commission of India in Singapore.

Abhayanand Singh, the Festival Chairman believes the Singapore South Asian Film Festival will be a landmark initiative, which will bring together quality South Asian cinema to Singapore for the first time. According to him, the aim of the festival is “to make a big impact and become a significant cultural gateway in the years to come,” he said, as mentioned in a report by PTI.

The gala, to be concluded on September 10, will also celebrate and host the red-carpet premier of the Nandita Das and Manav Kaul starrer Albert Pinto Ko Gussa Kyu Aata Hai, which has been directed by Soumitra Ranade.

The impact of cinema is not unknown. Tapping on this powerful medium, SGSAIFF aims to establish closer ties between Singapore and the fast-developing South Asian countries.

According to a report by IANS, the Artist Director of SGSAIFF, Amit Aggarwal believes the real challenge while selecting films for the festival was the creation of a program that could reflect the rich culture of South Asia. To him, the festival is a reflection of a program that is “truthful to the exciting new voices and stories which richly bring out the complexities of South Asia.”


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