An Interview with Sanjay Kumar Datta, Indian Festival Programmer, at the 19th IFM There Are a lot of Common Themes between Iranian and Indian Cinemas
20 April 2016 - 19:43
In an interview with the public relations office of the 34th FIFF, Indian festival programmer and joint secretary, expressed his joy regarding being present at Fajr International Film Festival for the fifth time and mentioned that the festival was being held more and more professionally year after year.
How many times have you participated in Fajr?
This is the fifth time I’m participating in this festival.
Can you tell us about your previous experiences?
The festival has always been fantastic and every time it’s changing for the better. This year the festival is held at a big place.
This year the festival is being held in a place which is located in the city center and the philosophy behind that has been to be in contact with more people. How do you see this approach?
That’s true. Amir Esfandiari also told me that. The previous time I came here, the festival was held at Milad Tower where we could just see the movies without any contact with people. We couldn’t even leave the Festival Palace. Whenever and wherever the festival is held at a place where there is direct contact with the public, the festival takes a higher range.
You said it was your fifth time participating in Fajr. Since you’ve experienced our festival when the national and international sections were held simultaneously, can you tell us what you think about taking an approach to holding the international section separately?
I think that’s a good thing. I’m a festival programmer myself and I’ve been visiting this festival to see Iranian films. We want to select Iranian films and screen them in our festivals in India. We love Iranian films and we’ve been screening Iranian films in our festivals in India and organizing Iranian festivals over there for more 20 years. It’s like our second home! There are common themes between Indian and Iranian films. Iranian Cinema is like a counterpart to Indian Cinema.
How do you see Fajr’s quality of organization in comparison with other festivals you’ve been to?
Fajr is getting more and more professional year after year. Last time I came here, the festival was held professionally and this year I see the festival is more professional than it’s ever been.
What kind of Iranian films do you mostly look forward to seeing?
There are a lot of Iranian films, but I particularly look forward to seeing films by new Iranian filmmakers. I’m a film lover myself and there’s no doubt that I’ve seen famous Iranian filmmakers’ films before. For instance, I’ve seen Abbas Kiarostami, Asghar Farhadi and all other famous filmmakers’ films, but I want to see new Iranian filmmakers’ films. I want to find out what they think of the Iranian society and culture. I want to see those films and choose films to screen in our festivals.
Have you seen any of these new films?
I’ve already seen “Ghashang & Farang” (Vahid Mousaiian), which is being screened for the first time and we are here to watch more.
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