LIFFT India Filmotsav & Awards commences from today

A 5-day global festival of Literature, Illusion, Information, Film, Frame, Television & Theatre will run from 1st to 5th Sept 2017 at Fariyas Resort Lonavala, a popular tourist destination near Mumbai.

Chief guest Director Leena Yadav in conversation with Vani Tripathy Tikoo
The grand opening of the five-day festival to promote and bring the best of films and new media content by independent, student and professional film makers from around the world, commenced today at the picturesque location of Lonavala, inaugurated by acclaimed director Leena Yadav with the cast & crew of her film “Parched” along with Founder CEO & Festival Director, Riju Bajaj.

Speaking on the occasion, Founder CEO & Festival Director Riju Bajaj elaborates, “LIFFT India Filmotsav 2017” has been established as a non-profit event to bring together filmmakers from more than 20 countries across the globe along with Indian & regional directors, producers, technicians, artists and writers coming forward to participate at a single platform. In fact, the festival features a record number of fifty-five debut filmmakers showcasing their talent at this world-cine fest. Co- founder of Lifft India, Dr. Anamika Sharma provided all the support even in absentia. She has exhaustively promoted the fest in America that helped in getting participation from a lot of international films.” Bajaj concluded.

Founder & Festival Director Riju Bajaj, Fariyas Resorts GM Nasir Khan & Rajit Kapoor at
 the curtain raiser about LIFFT INDIA FILMOTSAV & AWARDS 2017
The launch was followed by a Q&A session where Leena exclaimed, “It is a huge honour that the festival has opened with my film. “Parched” truly liberated me. My film dares to touch upon a taboo subject like Sex in our country, but the fact is that we are sexually repressed and we need to talk about it. The platform provided by LIFFT will encourage new age filmmakers to work on the content, which we believe in”.

The 1st edition of the festival saluted the contribution of actor par excellence Om Puri with a retrospect of three of his path-breaking films like Govind Nihlani’s “Ardha Satya”, Ismail Merchant’s “In Custody” & Ashwini Chaudhary’s “Dhoop”. The late actor’s wife Nandita Puri & his son Ishaan read out excerpts from his biography “The Unlikely Hero-Om Puri”. The festival introduced for the 1st time an award dedicated in his name for the best actor category as a tribute to world cinema.

Dolly Thakore, Wahid Chowhan, Nandita puri, Leena Yadav, Tanuja, Ramgopal Bajaj &
 Kanwaljeet conferring Lifetime achievement award to Late Ismail Merchant
Ismail merchant has been conferred
The festival conferred legendary producer & director Ismail Merchant with LIFFT India 2017 lifetime achievement award. Veteran actors Tanuja, Dolly Thakore, Ram Gopal Bajaj & Kanwaljeet Singh dedicated an award in his name -For The Best Producer. LIFFT India has also established Music, Editing, Cinematography & Art/Production Design award categories to honour the contribution of the legends, Khemchand Prakash, Renu Saluja, V.K.Murthy and Sameer Chanda respectively.

Apart from showcasing a handpicked line-up of Indian & International feature films, short films documentaries & Green Films, the festival would also feature Book launches & Reading sessions, Short Plays, Classical Dance Performances and Master class & Conversations by industry stalwarts like Manoj Bajpayee, Rajit Kapoor, Hansal Mehta, Vipin Sharma, Mukesh Chabra Vibhu Puri, Vani Tripathi Tikoo, Rajeev Raghunathan, Rujuta Somen, Sunaina Bhatnagar, Pankaj Tripathi, Pia Benegal etc.

The festival in its 1st edition, brings along with Hindi Films some regional must-watch films, including Govind Nihlani’s ‘Ti Ani Atar’ (Marathi), ‘Palyadwasi’ (Marathi), Raja Sen’s ‘Maya Mridanga’ (Bengali), ‘Alifa’ (Assamese), Eh Janam Tumhare Lekhe’ (Punjabi) and ‘Aaram Arvu’ (Tamil) among others.

Within the Children’s Film category, apart from featuring hindi films like ‘Pinti ka Sabun’ ‘Happy Mother’s Day’ & ‘Blue Mountain’, the festival would also showcase films from the foreign languages like ’Odd Squad The Movie’ (English), ‘Big Boy (Russian)’ & ‘Sonic Boom’ (English). To add the happiness quotient there will be children from NGO’s like Pune-based Shikhshan Gram & Sampark who would join in to get a taste of this slice of cinema.

About the Festival- Key Highlights:
· Literature, Information, Film, Frame, Television & Theatre awards shall be integral areas of LIFFT INDIA to interlace various art forms to boost cultural excellence and provide a platform for the unison of artistes from across the world

· Lifft India shall extensively explore marketing possibilities to help independent, student and professional filmmakers to market their films and future projects in a dedicated space “Filmy Nukkad” to host informal Film Market. Lifft India provides a supporting bridge of interaction between the filmmaker and the distributor/exhibitors

· Lifft India is amongst the very few festivals in India which has integrated the mix of all the possible genre of filmmaking meant for theatrical release, television, VOD service, Online Player etc. under one roof to boost the exchange of ideas and possibilities between the various film makers who attend the festival

· Lifft India has also introduced the Film Club and Satellite or moving film festival concept for itself to achieve the best outreach and promotions for the films that are part of Lifft India. It will benefit filmmakers with enhanced exposure to diverse audience. The officially selected films will be screened at highly commercial auditoriums to provide and achieve best world-class experience

· In order to promote theatre and stage actors, LIFFT India plans to organize an International Theatre Festival from 2018 to be integrated with the Filmotsav.

· The festival’s Frame section would have painting exhibitions by new age painters along with an exhibition of still photography by veteran photojournalist Fawzan Hussain.

· Touted to be India’s only Green Film festival, LIFFT India aims to use the strength & outreach of films to create global awareness about importance of ‘Zero Waste’ and ‘Go Green’ concepts to restore and retain the environment from being destroyed. This year’s edition introduces Five Films in the category of Green Films.