A focus curated by Payal Kapadia on the new wave of Indian filmmakers.

A crocodile carcass washes up in the heart of Mumbai city, a couple of siblings wonder about a two-headed snake, while a group of amateur radio enthusiasts  in Pune, send messages to satellites from their homemade radio stations – this package of short films encompasses a new and exciting trend in young Indian cinema. Imbued with fantasy and contemporary folklore, these filmmakers attempt to create their own vocabulary of cinematic practice while being firmly rooted in the questions of everyday life. From the dreams of the workers building the city Bangalore (Presence), to the indefinite struggles of those negotiating the hardship of the rural landscape (Pati, Village in the sky), to questions of delicate and forbidden love (CatDog), and the pure love letter to cinema (Remembering Diana an open letter to Kiarostami), to using a folktale that addresses questions of ecology (Makara), these films raise several questions while challenging the cinematic form. A large section of the films have also been produced as student works by the state funded Film and Television Institute of India which has historically shaped the face of independent cinema in the country. (Payal Kapadia)

The selection:

PATI – Sohrab Hura
India / 2010 / 10 min / doc

Presence – Yashaswini Raghunandan & Ekta Mittal
India / 2012 / 18 min / doc / Italian Premiere

Amateurs – Naveen Padmanabha
India / 2012 / 10 min / fiction / Italian Premiere

Village in the Sky – Ramesh Holbole
India / 20 min / 2016 / doc

CatDoc – Ashmita Guha
India / 20 min / fiction, 2019 / Italian Premiere

Makara – Prantik Basu
India / 19 min / 2013 / fiction / Italian Premiere

Remembering Diana. An Open Letter to Abbas Kiarostami – Hasainar Chengat
India / 20 min / 2016 / doc / European Premiere

Payal Kapadia is a Mumbai based filmmaker and artist. She studied Film Direction at the Film & Television Institute of India. Her short films AFTERNOON CLOUDS (2017) and AND WHAT IS THE SUMMER SAYING (2018) premiered respectively at the Cinéfondation and the Berlinale. She is a Berlinale Talents alumna and participated in 2019 at the Cinéfondation – Résidence du Festival de Cannes. Her first feature, A NIGHT OF KNOWING NOTHING, is part of the 2021 Director’s Fortnight selection. Her next project, ALL WE IMAGINE AS LIGHT, for which she received support from Ciclic and Hubert Bals Fund, is currently in financing.