Indian Film Festival Melbourne (IFFM) Announces 2024 Dates and Grand Plans My Melbourne Film Premiere
Melbourne - The 15th Indian Film Festival Melbourne has just been announced by the Governor of Victoria, Her Excellency Professor, the Honourable Margaret Gardner AC, at an IFFM industry event held in at the Marriott Hotel in Mumbai last night.In attendance wasMituBhowmick Lange AM, IFFM Festival Director, along with various leading films makers, studio heads, stars and stakeholders of the Indian film industry. The evening marked a pivotal moment for IFFM as it unveiled plans for its landmark 15th-year celebrations, set to unfold in August 2024.
IFFM 2024 will open on August 15, and will feature all the festival favourites including the Indian Independence Day Celebrations (flaghoisting), IFFM Awards night, IFFM Dance Competition and IFFM Closing Night.
This year the festival is also excited to announce a new festival initiative called IFFM Baari, which means “House” in Bengali. IFFM Baari will be an inclusive space for founders and leaders from diverse creative industries to engage with emerging creative voices especially from the south Asian communities. The IFFM Baariwill be a hub to support, empower and grow excitingand diverse creative narratives, with a variety of events, includinga keynote speaker, panel discussions, networking events and comedy.
MituBhowmick LangeAM said at the event: "IFFM Baari is a very positive step towards creating a home for the creative minds in the entertainment industry especially from more marginalised communities. It opens doors for collaboration, propelling Indian cinema into the Australian market and reinforcing the deep cultural ties between the two nations. As we celebrate 15 years of IFFM as a groundbreaking festival, Baari marks a new chapter in our journey."
This year will premiere My Melbourne. Set in Melbourne with a local cast and crew, mentored by four of the world’s best film makers – Rima Das, KabirKhan, Imtiaz and Onir, My Melbourne is a ground-breaking format with four relevant and timely stories celebrates diversity with new films celebrating the LGBTQAI+ community,disability, race and gender.
Working with the motto "a film with you, about you, and for you” the film seriesaims to authentically reflect the lived experiences and heartfelt stories of the community, drawing inspiration directly from their unique narratives. My Melbourne is a collaboration with Vic Screen and Screen Australia.
The Honourable Margaret Gardner said: “Founded in 2010, the Indian Film Festival of Melbourne brings Victorians together to experience the best of Indian filmmaking, including the recent screen initiative, known as ‘My Melbourne.' This project has seen the Festival partner with renowned Indian filmmakers to create films reflecting the lived experience of the Indian diaspora in Melbourne and highlight the diversity of those experiences. We are indeed fortunate to have this rich cultural event in Victoria.”
Also at the event, celebrated Indian actress, Shabana Azmiwas given the IFFM Excellence Award, which was confirmed for the 2023 festival, but Azmi was unable to accept the award at the time. Renowned for her powerful andversatile performances in Indian cinema, Azmi hasreceived multiple accolades including five National Film Awards during her four-decade career. Azmi has played a pivotal role in the rightsof women, development, reproductive health, housing for the economically weakersections, public health and HIV AIDS. Appointed Goodwill Ambassador for the United Nations Population Fund in 1992, Azmi continues to be an advocate for socialcauses.
IFFM also launched the ‘Shabana Special’ on its IFFM streaming platform that’s free to view Australia wide. Six of Shabana Azmi’s classic films will stream there, free to view with an option to donate to the Royal Children’s Hospital, Melbourne.
IFFM is the Southern Hemisphere's largest annual celebration of Indian cinema; aten-day extravaganza of Indian film and culture, featuring some of India’s biggest sporting and screen superstars. In 2024,IFFM will presentover 120 films in more than 20 languages, including Australian Premieres, braiding together South Asian stories from across the globe.
Established in 2010 by director MituBhowmick LangeAM (Mind Blowing Films), the festival consistently strives to program films that provide a robust forum for conversation and that enhance not only India’s rich storytelling tradition, but also looks to challenge people’s notions of India.
Celebrating the rich and diverse universe of Indian film culture, IFFM hosts celebrities, trailblazers, and disruptors. From the high glamour of the Awards night with the red carpet and visiting stars, to the new My Melbourne feature film, IFFM truly speaks to a wide audience of moviegoers.
Interviews with Festival Director, MituBhowmick LangeAM available on request