The Chennai International Film Festival will get bigger this year and there seem to be enough reasons to testify that.

The Indo-Cine Appreciation Foundation (ICAF), which has been the sole organiser of the festival for seven years, will get two co-organisers this year. South Indian Film Chamber of Commerce (SIFCC) and Film Federation of India (FFI) are now part of the organising committee, said E. Thangaraj, secretary, ICAF.

The budget for the festival has been almost doubled from that of last year, with more movies set to hit the screens. Apart from the Woodlands multiplex, SIFCC's theatre will be one more addition like last year.

With help from the FFI and SIFCC, the ICAF is hopeful that the Tamil film industry will come forward to support the festival. Tamil Nadu Film Producers' Council president Rama Narayanan is on the advisory panel along with Suhasini Mani Ratnam, Khushboo, Revathi and Rohini.

“We hope that South Indian Film Artistes' Association and Directors' union will patronise the festival with their presence. This would put Chennai on the map of global film festivals,” he said.

While Iran and Turkey are countries in focus, many new countries have confirmed their participation. Ukranian film ‘My Widow's Husband,' an acclaimed comedy film, will be part of the festival, and Macedonia has also supplied DVDs of the best films from the country.

For the first time, a retrospective of contemporary French director Oliver Assayas will be held, screening seven of his most celebrated films.

North Korean film ‘Doomed River' will be a key attraction this year, with its taut storyline and stunning locations.

“The film festival will also be a platform for directors and actors to choose locations. There are countries with picturesque locations that we are not even aware of. The festival is the best place to find out such places,” Mr. Thangaraj says.

The organisers have also planned to seek support from the State government for the festival, slated for December.

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