Censorship at film festivals illogical: Indian filmmakers

Panaji: Indian Panorama films were screened uncensored for the first time at the 47th International film festival of India (Iffi) and filmmakers, whose movies were screened under the category, said that it did not make sense to censor films at a festival where a select audience is present. Hoping that the new rule of not imposing censorship will continue at Iffi, Indian filmmakers said that censorship is undesirable because individuals who censor films do as per their personal interest.

2015 National Award winner M B Padmakumar, whose Malayalam film ‘Roopantharam’ was screened under Indian Panorama this year, said, that the manner in which censorship is carried out can never be desirable as the filmmaker has his own unique vision for the film.

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It was a long-time demand by Indian filmmakers to abolish censorship for films shown under the Indian Panorama section as international films were always being shown at Iffi uncensored.

Gireesh Kumar K, who has won the Golden Bengal Tiger at the Kolkata film festival, said, “Censorship curtails the creative freedom of the filmmaker. The flow of the film is ruined by censorship.”

 He said that there is another manner of censorship taking place in India, where a few distributors of films think they know what the audience wants to watch, which means that the audience are unable to see some of the best films in terms of content

Gireesh Kumar K’s film deals with abandonment of aged parents by their children, while Padmakumar’s film shows struggles with disability. Both are independent filmmakers, like Akshay Singh, whose film Pinky Beauty Parlour, dealing with skin colour bias in India, has travelled to Mumbai and Cannes film festivals.

 Singh said, “The audience is already mature and always was mature that is why masters like Satyajit Ray made such classic films so long ago.”

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