The ninth edition of the India Film Project (IFP), Asia’s largest content creation festival, concluded amidst much fanfare on the 13th of October at Mehboob Studios in Mumbai. As the package partner for the event we had a ringside view of the happenings at #IFP9. Here’s our list of the highlights:

Day 1

The first day started with some fascinating discussions including a Master Class in Acting with Naseeruddin Shah, Cardinal Sins of Cinema with Javed Akhtar, and a Master Class in Filmmaking with Nitesh Tiwari. Each of these sessions had standing room only as was borne out by the long queue of film buffs in the morning at Mehboob Studios.

Our appreciation for how well the event had been curated continued to grow as the day progressed. From “Awaam ki Awaaz”, a conversation with young music sensations Naezy and Ritviz, to “Slay the Chudail: Representing Women in Indian Fantasy” a session with Sukanya Venkatraghavan, Nikita Deshpande, and Tashan Mehta, to “Comic Sans: On Creating Comic Alter-egos” which featured Kaneez Surka, Gaurav Gera, and Kiku Sharda, there was something for everyone.

Day 2

We landed early on the second day and caught the winners of the “Screenwriting Challenge” presenting their prizewinning entries before trooping across to the main hall to watch an engaging conversation on “The Future of Bollywood: How to Win Hearts and Minds Without a Famous Surname”. For nearly an hour a panel of Radhika Madan, Kirti Kulhari, Gulshan Devaiah, and Jim Sarbh, discussed their thoughts and experiences on this topic. We stayed put in this hall and to see the always amazing Manoj Bajpayee speak to Aparshakti Khurana in the “Signature Master Class: Making of a Legend”.

The rest of the day was a delicious cornucopia of sessions and speakers. From Devdutt Pattanaik on mythology to the “Showrunners Roundtable” with Vikramaditya Motwane, Patrick Graham, and Karan Anshuman, to “Visual Storytelling through New Age Music Videos” with Dar Gai, Navzar Eranee, and Aaron Pinto, we lapped it all up.

Contest winners

The signature competition of the India Film Project was the 50 Hour Filmmaking Challenge, which attracted 1,680 short films entries from nearly 35,000 filmmakers from 320 cities across 14 countries. The highly accomplished panel of Abhishek Chaubey, Anjali Menon, Pan Nalin, and Pradeep Sarkar selected the following winners:

Professional Category

Film name: Paul

Team name: @not.just.a.dentist

Director: Rishab S. Joshi

Amateur Category

Film name: Janu

Team name: Vilvanaram

Director: Rajkumar A

Mobile Category

Film name: Kheer

Team name: UA Productions

Director: Soumyadeep Bhattacharya

To sum, IFP 2019 was a resounding success, and we can’t wait to be part of the event’s 10th edition next year!

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