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Siraj Syed

Siraj Syed is the India Correspondent for and a member of FIPRESCI, the International Federation of Film Critics. He is a Film Festival Correspondent since 1976, Film-critic since 1969 and a Feature-writer since 1970. 



Aspern Papers’s world premiere to open 49th IFFI

Aspern Papers’s world premiere to open 49th IFFI

The 49th International Film Festival of India (IFFI) will be held in Goa from 20th to 28th November and will showcase 212 films from over 68 countries.

~The festival will open with the World Premiere of The Aspern Papers. The director Julien Landais and , including Jonathan Rhys Meyers (Golden Globe winner), Joely Richardson (Oscar-nominated actress), Morgane Polanski (actress and daughter of Roman Polanski) will be present at the screening.

~On the occasion of the 100 birth anniversary of Ingmar Bergman, IFFI will showcase seven of the best films of his career, as also a documentary on Bergman, titled Bergman Island directed by Marie Nyrerod.

~Israel will be the Country Focus, Jharkhand (an eastern state in the Indian union) will be the State Focus.

~The famous Israeli Actor, Alon Aboutboul (known for Hollywood films, including Rambo III, Munich by Steven Spielberg, Body of Lies by Ridley Scott and The Dark Knight Rises), will be the special guest as part of Israel delegation.

~Dan Wolman from Israel will be given the Lifetime Achievement Award.

~International Competition section has 15 films, out of which 3 are Indian and includes films produced and co-produced by 22 countries.

~ Festival Kaleidoscope section carries 20 critically acclaimed international films that have been to major film festivals and majority of them being multiple award winners. This is one of the most sought after sections of the festival that showcases best and top films of the year.

~World Panorama section has 67 films, which are specially curated for the festival. This includes 4 World Premieres, 2 International Premieres, 15 Asia Premieres and 60 India Premieres. It will present 15 films, which are Oscar submissions from respective countries.

~Indian Sports Biopics: Gold, Mary Kom, Bhaag Milkha Bhaag, 1983, MSD: The untold story and Soorma will be screened at the 49th IFFI, as an extension of the Khelo (Play) India Branding.

~A retrospective of Vinod Khanna will be showcasing some of his best films including Achanak, Lekin and Amar Akbar Anthony.

~Master classes and In-conversation section will feature several renowned celebrities from the film, including Prasoon Joshi, Dan Wolman, Sreekar Prasad, Anil Kapoor, Sumit Israni, Boney Kapoor, Arjun Kapoor, Jahnvi Kapoor, David Dhawan, Varun Dhawan, Rohit Dhawan, Jairaj, Kaushik Ganguly, Shaji Karun, Srijit Mukhrjee, Sridhar and Sreeram Raghavan, Anupama Chopra, Rajiv Masand, Bhawna Somaya, Jason Hafford, Meghna Gulzar, Leena Yadav, Gauri Shinde.

~Homage will be paid to Late Shashi Kapoor, Late Sridevi, Late Sh. M.Karunanidhi and Late Ms. Kalpana Lajmi. In the International Homages this year, IFFI will pay tribute to Terence Marsh, Milos Forman, and Anne V Coates.

~IFFI will showcase the movies Sholay and ‘Hichki’ as part of a Special Package for Visually Impaired Children, with special screenings and audio description commentary.

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About Siraj Syed

Syed Siraj
(Siraj Associates)

Siraj Syed is a film-critic since 1970 and a Former President of the Freelance Film Journalists' Combine of India.

He is the India Correspondent of and a member of FIPRESCI, the international Federation of Film Critics, Munich, Germany

Siraj Syed has contributed over 1,015 articles on cinema, international film festivals, conventions, exhibitions, etc., most recently, at IFFI (Goa), MIFF (Mumbai), MFF/MAMI (Mumbai) and CommunicAsia (Singapore). He often edits film festival daily bulletins.

He is also an actor and a dubbing artiste. Further, he has been teaching media, acting and dubbing at over 30 institutes in India and Singapore, since 1984.

Bandra West, Mumbai


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