The second edition of the Silk Road International Film Festival opened in Fuzhou, China on Tuesday with Zoya Akhtar’s Dil Dhadakne Do.
Featuring an ensemble cast of Anil Kapoor, Shefali Shah, Priyanka Chopra, Ranveer Singh, Anushka Sharma and Farhan Akhtar, the movie is a bitter sweet comedy of a dysfunctional Punjabi family that sails on a cruise ship to celebrate the wedding anniversary of the characters played by Kapoor and Shah.
Dil Dhadakne Do is part of the festival’s India focus.
The festival’s Competition section will open with Ashwiny Iyer Tiwari’s The New Classmate, starring Swara Bhaskar, Ratna Shah Pathak and Pankaj Tripathy. The New Classmate will vie with 23 other films from many countries. Five of these, including The New Classmate, will be world premieres.
The 24 movies were selected from 950 entries that came from 76 countries.
Some of the other films in the India Focus section will be Gurvinder Singh’s Cannes screener, Chauthi Koot, Anurag Kashyap’s Bombay Velvet and Dibakar Banerjee’s Detective Byomkesh Bakshi.
Tiwari, Ratna Shah, Gurvinder Singh were seen at the opening ceremony. Kashyap and Banerjee will be arriving at the festival in the coming days.
The festival was launched in 2014, and will screen 75 movies this year -- all of them from countries on the Silk Road.
The Silk Road or Route is an ancient communication network of trade and culture that was key to the interaction between the East and the West. The route ran through Asia, and merchants, monks, pilgrims and soldiers from mostly India and China used the Silk Road during various points in history. Almost 6,000 km long, the road got its name from the lucrative trade in Chinese silk that was carried out since the beginning of the Han Dynasty (206 BC).
(Gautaman Bhaskaran is on the jury of the Second Silk Road International Film Festival.)