Navi Mumbai: Engineer's Short Film Makes Top 100 At DPIFF 2024

Navi Mumbai: Engineer's Short Film Makes Top 100 At DPIFF 2024

Filmmaking journey was shaped during his stint assisting acclaimed director Sanjay Leela Bhansali on Gangubai Kathiawadi.

Bhalchandra ChorghadeUpdated: Friday, March 15, 2024, 10:34 PM IST
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A 38-year-old engineer, writer, and filmmaker has made waves with his 21-minute suspense thriller, “The Girl at the Airport,” which secured a spot among the top 100 short films at the prestigious Dadasaheb Phalke International Film Festival (DPIFF), 2024.

The film, by Ameya Khanwalkar, who currently lives in Navi Mumbai and originally hails from Jabalpur, Madhya Pradesh, revolves around a boy ensnared in paranormal activities initiated by a girl he sees at the airport, depicting his struggle to break free from the eerie entanglement.

Premiering at the Yellowstone International Film Festival in Gurugram, it garnered acclaim, clinching awards for Best Director and Best Indian Short Film at the Calcutta International Cult Film Festival, along with accolades from other renowned platforms like the World International Film Festival and Dubai International Cine Carnival.

Khanwalkar’s journey into filmmaking was shaped during his stint assisting acclaimed director Sanjay Leela Bhansali on “Gangubai Kathiawadi.” Drawing from this experience, he established Anigma Studios, dedicated to showcasing unique narratives and nurturing emerging talents in the industry.

Khanwalkar credits the inspiration for “The Girl at the Airport” to a short story penned by a friend. Enamoured by the concept, he adapted it for the screen, infusing his own creative twists, particularly in the climax. Commencing production in December 2022, post-production wrapped up by July 2023.

The film’s festival circuit debut in August 2023 yielded success, accumulating 11 awards and one nomination within a brief timeframe. Recognition at DPIFF marked a pinnacle moment for Khanwalkar

Expressing gratitude to his lead actors, Pranay Pachauri and Riya Suman, as well as his support system of family, friends, and well-wishers, Khanwalkar remains steadfast in his aspirations. Currently scripting his debut feature, a romantic comedy, he envisions establishing himself as a prominent filmmaker, with plans to relocate to Mumbai by year's end to pursue his cinematic dreams.

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