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Filmmakers' responsibility to rekindle hope in people, says Mahesh Bhatt inaugurating 25th KIFF

Filmmakers' responsibility to rekindle hope in people, says Mahesh Bhatt inaugurating 25th KIFF

India Blooms News Service | @indiablooms | 08 Nov 2019, 10:09 pm

Kolkata/IBNS: Inaugurating the 25th Kolkata International Film Festival (KIFF) here on Friday, Mahesh Bhatt said it is the responsibility of filmmakers like him to rekindle hope in people during the ongoing "dangerous times".

Elucidating the role of filmmakers in people's lives, Bhatt said, "These are dangerous times. In the age of highest collectivity, we are the most divided. That is why we need storytellers to tell stories that can bring us together. The glue that held mankind together has withered.

The world is falling apart. It's high time that we all as filmmakers realise that we have an awesome responsibility that we whip up in the human beings the hope of a better tomorrow because the structures all around us globally are collapsing.

Man has turned against man. I think storytellers must do what mothers used to do at home. When the houses used to fight and children falls apart, mothers used to bring all and tell a story which rekindles hope. That is what we are celebrating here today."

The 25th edition of the festival was also inaugurated by iconic actress Rakhee Gulzar and superstar Shah Rukh Khan- the brand ambassador of West Bengal- apart from the state's Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee.

Though Bollywood icons and couple Amitabh Bachchan and Jaya Bachchan- the KIFF guests of every year- could not turn up on Friday owing to the veteran actor's health issues, former cricket captain and Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) president Sourav Ganguly was invited to the mega event hosted by Mamata at the Netaji Indoor Stadium.

"Amitabh Bachchan is unwell. Last night, Amitabh Bachchan and Jaya Bachchan informed that they will not be able to come," said the Chief Minister adding, "I am sure Amitabh ji's heart is still in KIFF."

Filmmaker Raj Chakraborty, who has replaced Tollywood superstar Prosenjit Chatterjee as the KIFF chairman this year leading to a row, informed 212 feature films and 152 short and documentary films from 76 countries will be screened between Nov 8 and 15.

The films will be shown in 17 theatre halls. Legendary filmmaker late Satyajit Ray's Goopy Gyne Bagha Byne was the first film screened on Saturday at the KIFF which has a special focus on Germany this year.

In a rather emotional speech, Rakhee Gulzar, who hails from the state, said, "I have seen lot of film festivals in Delhi. But it is not so easy to host this kind of a well-organised film festival and satisfy all."

Among the other dignitaries were present German filmmaker Volker Schlondorff and American actress Andie Macdowell.

Ganguly, a newcomer to the KIFF, stressed on Bengali cinema and regional actors. "The Bengali cinema is because of its local actors and their predecessors. Shah Rukh Khan is known to the entire world but these wonderful Bengali actors are our own," he said.

"The Bengali cinema is completing its 100 years so I thank all people who have contributed to the Bengali cinema. The festival is the celebration of all those people who have contributed to the Bengali cinema for 100 years," the former skipper added.

(Images: UNI and AITC Twitter handle)

Filmmakers' responsibility to rekindle hope in people, says Mahesh Bhatt inaugurating 25th KIFF

India Blooms News Service
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