Film enthusiasts can look forward to a scintillating and educative engagement when the 16th edition of South Asia’s oldest and largest festival for non-features, the Mumbai International Film Festival for Documentary, Short Fiction and Animation films (MIFF) unspools at the sprawling Films Division complex from 28th January to 3rd February, 2020. First held in 1990, the festival organised by FD, Ministry of Information & Broadcasting, Government of India, is screening special packages spotlighting the late great Satyajit Ray, Ireland (Country Focus), the European Union, the Academy Awards (Oscars), and the best of international film festivals alongside student endeavours.
The festival also honours an Indian documentary veteran with the V Shantaram Lifetime Achievement Award that carries a cash component of Rs. 10 lakhs, trophy and citation. MIFF 2020 highlights include awards for Best Student, and Bestowing Debut Film.
MIFF 2020 promises a fiesta and apart from showcasing quality films from India and abroad, the festival will also host interactive sessions, panel discussions, seminars, workshops, exhibitions, cultural programs and master classes by critically acclaimed film-makers, orchestrated by a team led by Smita Vats Sharma, Director MIFF and Director-General, Films Division.
At the 2014 MIFF, the outspoken Russian born and Berlin based filmmaker of Armenian origin Don Askarian had lamented, “a great country like India doesn’t have a channel for documentary films. Even the smallest country in Europe has a separate channel devoted to documentaries, the government should spend public money on a doc channel, and recognise that such a channel is not merely a vehicle for documentaries, but a purveyor of culture.” This year the MIFF 2020 will be held at Nehru Centre Auditorium, Worli.