The curtains came down on the weeklong 4th Bengaluru International Film Festival (BIFFes) with the promise of the Karnataka Government making it an annual December event and Governor Hans Raj Bhardwaj exuding the hope of Bangalore becoming an important centre of film culture.

Hopes for Karnataka

Speaking at the valedictory event, where awards were also given away to the best films, Mr. Bhardwaj said Karnataka, which has a rich heritage in art, theatre and culture, can become “top in films too” if the right infrastructure and atmosphere are provided.

Taking a trip down memory lane, he recalled actors like Vyjayantimala and Hema Malini, Bollywood stars who hailed from the south, who had entered cinema through the world of dance and arts. He then shared memories of his meetings with two of the biggest Kannada stars — Rajkumar and Vishnuvardhan. He had known N.T. Rama Rao, M.G. Ramachandran and Jayalalithaa, all of whom went on to become powerful politicians.

Gowda's promise

Speaking earlier, Muddu Mohan, Director of Information Department, said that Chief Minister D.V. Sadananda Gowda had said the Government was committed to making the festival an annual event every December.

Artistic director of the festival Narahari Rao said over 3,500 delegates had registered themselves and theatres ran to full houses in some venues, indicating that “Bangalore was bitten by the film bug”.

Two yesteryear stars of Kannada films — Jayanthi and Bharathi Vishnuvardhan — were guests on the occasion. Several Kannada actors were seen in audience at the closing ceremony.