As the first of the selections for the 70th Venice Film Festival begins to roll in, India figures in one of the most important sidebars called Venice Days. Richie Mehta’s Siddharth has been selected in this section.
The movie, which features Naseeruddin Shah, Rajesh Tailang, Tannishtha Chatterjee, Anurag Arora, Shobha Sharma Jassi and Geeta Agarwal Sharma, plots the story of a street vendor, who lives with his wife and two children. One of them, 12-year-old Siddharth, is sent away to a relative’s home in Ludhiana where the boy is offered a job and a place a sleep.
All seems well till Siddharth disappears, and his heartbroken father begins a search for his son that takes him to all corners of India.
A Festival note says that the film “builds on the emotions of one man´s painful awakening, and shows a different, almost neorealist India, described with that ingredient of universal humanity that is the Indian movie’s gift to the world,”
Venice Days, will have 12 features and two shorts among other works, and has been modelled on Cannes’ Directors’ Fortnight. Venice Days is promoted by Italian film directors.
The Festival runs from August 28 to September 7 on the Lido, an island off mainland Venice and flanked by the Adriatic Sea on one side and canals as well as backwaters on the other.