Bollywood Hungama
Last Updated 19.03.2019 | 10:53 PM IST
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IFFLA closes with impressive increase in attendance

The Indian Film Festival of Los Angeles (IFFLA) wrapped on April 18 with the North American premiere of HAZAARON KHWAISHEN AISI (A Thousand Dreams Such as These), a sweeping political drama focusing on three friends caught up in the power struggles following India’s 1975 state of emergency. Director Sudhir Mishra introduced the screening to an enthusiastic audience and joined actress Vanessa Redgrave, along with other festival guests, at the gala Closing Night reception afterwards in IFFLA’s Indian-themed Cinema Lounge. Attendance was up more than 15 percent over 2003, with an estimated 7,000 festivalgoers attending IFFLA’s five-day run at ArcLight Cinemas Hollywood, the official home of the festival. Sold-out programs included CHOKHER BALI (A Passion Play), MAQBOOL, A DAY IN THE LIGHT/UNTOUCHABLES VS. ARYANS, WHEN THE STORM CAME/THE DAY MY GOD DIED, VIRUMAANDI, MUGHAL-E-AZAM (The Great Mughal), and HAZAARON KHWAISHEN AISI (A Thousand Dreams Such as These). “We’re delighted that the second edition of IFFLA was such a great success,” said IFFLA’s Executive Director Christina Marouda. “The overwhelmingly positive feedback from filmmakers, participants and moviegoers reaffirms that there’s an enthusiastic audience for Indian cinema in L.A.” IFFLA’s first-annual competitive prize awards, conferred by three juries consisting of filmmakers, academics, journalists and industry representatives, went to MAQBOOL (Best Feature), Vishal Bharadwaj’s contemporary Indian restaging of Shakespeare’s Macbeth; Jascha de Wilde and Chris Relleke’s STARKISS THE INDIAN CIRCUS GIRLS, a profile of the young performers in India’s oldest traveling circus (Best Documentary), with an honorable mention for Andrew Levine’s THE DAY MY GOD DIED; and THE BYPASS directed by Amit Kumar (Best Short).

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