Intense and diverse. Poignant and pensive. Stirring these emotions, students of A.R. Rahman’s K.M. Music Conservatory fittingly ushered in the 10{+t}{+h} Chennai International Film Festival presented by The Hindu and Casa Grande Pvt. Ltd., and organised by the Indo Cine Appreciation Foundation (ICAF).  

Eclectic show

A melting pot of genres and sensibilities, the eight-day film festival, which is financially being supported by the Tamil Nadu government, will make accessible over 160 films from over 57 countries, across eight venues in the city. Woodlands theatre on Thursday, was venue not just to evocative sufi, opera, piano and film song renditions by the students of the music school, but also to the debut solo piano performance of A.R. Rahman’s son Ameen Rahman who played Minuet in G minor by J.S. Bach.

Govt. sanctions

Rs. 50 lakh

Speaking at the inauguration of the festival, K.T. Rajenthra Balaji, State minister for information (special programme implementation) listed the various measures taken by the State government to encourage cinema through awards, and said that the Chief Minister had sanctioned Rs. 50 lakh for the film festival this year, and Rs. 25 Lakhs the previous year.

Responding to the plea by R. Sarath Kumar, president, South Indian Artists Association at the function for a separate auditorium to hold film-related functions, the minister said that the project estimate was being prepared for the new auditorium (Kalaivanar Arangam) and that the Chief Minister would inaugurate it when it was ready.

Siddharth Varadarajan, editor, The Hindu , while speaking about responding to what was happening around the world and at the same time being true to the newspaper’s values said that that the purpose of supporting such a film festival was to celebrate not just the best of what Tamil Nadu, the south and India had to offer, but also to expose film buffs to the best of world cinema to facilitate learning and osmosis.

The festival, which opened with award-winning French film ‘Amour’ by Michael Haneke, will feature films such as ‘The Gardner’ (Iran), ‘War Witch’ (Canada) and ‘Someone in Love’ (Japan) in the world cinema section.

For a heady dose of nostalgia, films such as ‘Pather Panchali’, ‘Chandralekha’, ‘Dweepa’ and ‘Vasthuhara’ will be screened to celebrate 100 years of Indian cinema.

Local flavour

Bringing in a local flavour will be 12 short-listed Tamil movies which are competing in the Tamil film competition.  

M. Arunkumar, managing director, Casa Grande, said that exposure to cinema would help in the evolution of society.

M. Rajaram, secretary, information department, Ravi Kottarakara, secretary, South Indian Film Chamber of Commerce, Ameer, president, Film Employees’ Federation of South India, S.P. Jananathan, treasurer, Tamil Nadu Film Director’s Association, and S. Kannan, president ICAF also participated in the programme.

The title sponsor of the event is Casa Grande and associate sponsors are Butterfly and NAC Jewellers. For further details about the venues and schedule, visit http://