Actor-director Shekhar Kapur and actor-producer Sanjay Suri are part of the juries at the ongoing Dubai International Film Festival.
Kapur, who presides over the Muhr Asia Africa Feature Jury, began his directing career with Masoom in 1983, and went on to helm movies like Mr India, Bandit Queen and Elizabeth as well as its sequel. It was of course Bandit Queen -- on the life of Chambal dacoit Phoolan Devi – that pushed Kapur into the limelight, the film being controversial because of Seema Biswas’ nude scene.
Kapur said recently in Singapore that he wanted to make a movie on India and China after his latest, Paani, hits the screens in 2015. Paani, on water wars, has been taking a long time in coming.
Suri, who is part of the Muhr Arab Feature Jury (chaired by acclaimed helmer Jim Sheridan), has acted in more than 20 films, including Nandita Das’ Firaaq, Pinjar and My Brother Nikhil. Suri has also made India’s largest crowd-sourced movie with 400 co-producers.
Ritesh Batra’ The Lunchbox is competing in the Muhr Asia Africa section. Staring Irrfan Khan, Nawazuddin Siddiqui and Nimrat Kaur, the film is a touching love story, where one of the thousands of “dabbas” in Mumbai plays Cupid after landing on the wrong lunch table.
Both Batra and producer Anurag Kashyap were unhappy when The Lunch Box was not submitted as India’s official Oscars entry in the foreign language category. Instead, Gyan Correa’s The Good Road made the cut.
(Gautaman Bhaskaran is covering the Dubai International Film Festival running from December 6 to 14)