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66 short films from 20 countries screened at ISFFI 2015

By BIS Chennai
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Kolkata, Mar. 28. .    Chennai:  The 9th International Short Film Festival of India (ISFFI),Chennai hit the screens of selected city theatres on 25-26th March 2015, unrolling a vibrant selection of short films, documentaries and animations. Out of the 1150 entries that came in for the festival from 66 countries, 66 short films from 20 countries were selected and screened during this two day festival. The Indian entries were from Karnataka, Chennai, Mumbai, Haryana, Andhara Pradesh, Kerala and Kolkata.
This  two-day festival, best known for its diverse and cosmopolitan balance of films including various genres like drama, documentaries, animation, comedy, science-fiction and mystery was an initiative of the  Don Bosco Institute of Communication Arts (DBICA), Chennai for the benefit  of film lovers, media critics, film theorists, film students, and all those associated with film production.

The festival coordinator Fr. Harris Pakkam, who is also the festival director and founder, gave the rationale of this initiative, and expressed his contentment on seeing the 9th edition saying, ''What came in a small way has grown so much in these nine years, and I can see a great boom in this genre of short films. They have indeed become a powerful medium of communication, education, empowerment and entertainment''.

The Celebrities and Guests of honour who took part in the inaugural ceremony of ISFFI were Vice Provincial of Chennai Province Fr. Deva Joe SDB , Vice Chairman - DB Institutions, Director  SS Stanley,  Director M. Perarasu , Director Ram Prakash,  Director, & Film Critic Cable Shankar, Actor & Director Aruldoss , Cameraman C.J. Rajkumar, Cameraman Deepak and Editor Sabu Joseph.

All the dignitaries gave their views on the role of Short films and the impact it had created in today's society, specially among the younger generation.  Rev. Deva Joe highlighted the necessity of social consciousness that each filmmaker should have in his/her creation.

Brian M. Jennings, veteran Hollywood VFX supervisor and editor, in his message expressed his amazement at the high quality animation films that came in for the festival, and remarked that India was making giant leaps in the field of VFX and Animation.

The festival came to a graceful climax with the award ceremony in the presence of a good number of representatives and dignitaries from Media. They were all enthused at the overwhelming response of the film makers and the audience towards short films.

Awards were given under three categories. ''Grounded'' a short film by Alexis Michelik from France won the first place in the International Category, while ''Pere'' by Achourlofti from Tunisia and ''Eine Gute Geschichte'' by Martin Christopher Bode from Germany bagged the second and third place respectively.

Under the National Category, the first place was awarded to the short film ''Kadamai'' by M. Balasubramaniam from Chennai, while J. Sabarish 's short film  ''Last Kiss'' from Chennai was awarded the second place, and Vidyasagar Gollamudi's short film ''Kurrtha''  from Hyderabad was awarded the third place.

There was also a Special Category awards given. The best Animation Film was awarded to ''The Street Artist'' by Mahmoud Hindwai from Jordan, and the best Documentary short film was awarded to ''Not Anymore'' by Matthew Van Dyke from USA, and the Audience Choice Awards were given to ''Atleast Oru Mutham'' by Darshan from Chennai and to ''Ahimsa''  by Shivaraj from Chennai.

Other 16 filmmakers who took part in the film festival from India and abroad were awarded with a participation certificate.

DBICA has always been a vanguard organization and its uniqueness and impact result from being ahead in promoting this genre of short film making already in the 90's, and bringing in a creative fusion between the mainstream media and the alternate media through short film festivals like these.

ISFFI 2015 was organised in collaboration with some International Film Festival groups, and had also a dynamic set of academic collaborators from the city such as S.R.M. Sivaji Ganesan Film Institute, Chennai, Don Bosco College of Art & Design, Department of Visual Communications - Sathyabama University, Department of Visual Communications - Madras Christian College, Alpha Group of Institutions, Bridge Academy and SIGA Polytechnic College.

ISFFI continues to remain as Chennai's unique and biggest short film festival offering an array of visual delight leaving the viewers enthralled, and at the same time educating, entertaining and empowering them.
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