SAIF Festival to screen childrens’ films

MUMBAI: The fourth annual 2007 South Asian International Film Festival (SAIFF) held from 3—9 October in New York, will present five films in its films for children’s afternoon on 7 October at the Rubin Museum of Art.

The festival’s first film, Krishna-Animated Series, premiering in North America, is the story of Krishna saving villagers from the violence and hate of the malevolent serpent Kaliya. Director Vincent Michael Edwards is a 20-year veteran of the entertainment industry, with a wide range of experience that runs the gamut of platforms, including visual development and storyboarding for animation as well as live action projects for most of the major studios in Hollywood before ultimately becoming a director in his own right.

The three Girl-Stars films, Anita the Beekeeper, Bhanwari the Policewoman and Anuradha the medical student are eight minute films chronicling extraordinary tales of ordinary girls who have changed their lives by going to school. Girl Stars show what girls in India and around the world can do, if they go to school. Girl Stars is a multi- media project that creates ‘icons’ out of everyday women and girls who have changed their lives by completing their education. Girl Stars was supported by UNICEF India.

Pallavi Arora, director of the last two films, Bhanwari the Policewoman, and Anuradha the Medical Student graduated from the National Institute of Design, Ahmedabad, India in 2002, with a specialization in film and video communication. Her film ‘Moods of the Ganga’ screened at the 22nd International Festival of Films on Art, Montreal Canada 2004 and was also part of the Berlinale talent campus selection at the Berlin International Film Festival, 2005.

Milk and Opium is the story of Swaroop, a young Muslim boy from a caste of musicians who leaves his desert village with his Uncle Nizam in search of work. Along his journey, he is confronted with a new and changed society, a globalized India, which greatly contrasts with his traditional way of life. Swaroop tries to adapt to his ever-changing circumstances of being a traveling musician and eventually finds himself in the trying situation of being in the city alone. With outstanding traditional Sufi musical performances, Milk & Opium leaves the viewer questioning what will become of Swaroop and traditional India. An artist and a teacher, director Joel Palombo has made several short films and video works. His short films have played most recently at the Dallas Museum, the 2005 Japan World Expo, and Planet In Focus Film Festival in Toronto.