'S Durga' director moves court against IFFI, I and B ministry

Sujoy Ghosh IFFI

Festival screenings attract audiences of committed cinema-watchers and offer space for experimental and independent films, like Nude and S Durga, whose aesthetics may not have a wider appeal.

Ghosh has reportedly confirmed the news, but did not reveal anything more.

Several Iranian films on homosexuality, a topic which is considered off limits in the country, such as Be Like Others and Circumstances, have made it big at worldwide films festivals like Sundance.

The jury had submitted the list to the ministry on September 20-21, but the line was made public, where these two films were missing from the list. "But I will file a case in the Kochi High Court", Sasidharan said. "I stand with the chairman of the jury".

Sujoy Ghosh has stepped down from the panel of the International Film Festival of India (IFFI) amid claims of the ministry dropping two films without consulting the jury. "It was a story that needed to be told, since no one asks these models about what their lives are like".

He said he wanted the ministry to implement the jury's decision and include films in the final list. He added that there is a likelihood of the ministry arguing that it was rejected because it was not a technically complete film.

The film, a road movie that follows the horrifying experience of two hitchhikers, a man and a woman, at the hands of two men in the dead of the night, won the Hivos Tiger Award in the International Film Festival Rotterdam 2017. "Durga is principal Hindu goddess and the filmmaker may seek normal certification of the film from CBFC", it was pointed out.It is important to note that Regional Officer, Thiruvanthapuram, who examined the uncensored version found it violating Guideline 6 of the CBFC, i.e. provocative and disrespectful of certain faith and religion. "I don't want to take away from the merit of the other films that we select and that are being shown".

Reacting to the decision taken by the Government of India to ban those movies, veteran filmmaker Shyam Benegal backed Ghosh and said that the government should not support those people, who do not want the film to be shown.

"Sexy Durga" and "Nude" were dropped despite the jury's decision because of the I&B Ministry's interference. "Right now, the controversy is around Nude and S Durga but there are other good films that need to be watched and lauded so I don't wish to officially disassociate myself from the Panorama".



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