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When it drizzles

A rain-soaked red carpet led to a screening of Woody Allen’s Viki Cristina Barcelona, a great film. Anjali Bhushan reports from the Cannes film festival.

entertainment Updated: May 20, 2008 14:54 IST
Anjali Bhushan

The Hindujas hosted an India party at their sprawling villa for Guideman Dev Anand. Although there has been rain — at times, strong and at times, a drizzle — the entire Indian contingent complete with the I & B ministry’s Uday Verma and our international film festival director Neelam Kapur, amongst other government officials, showed up dutifully.

Get going
Seasoned directors Ketan Mehta, Vidhu Vinod Chopra and Sudhir Mishra were there too. But as is his wont, Dev Anand urged the unfamiliar guests and the youth to go out there and make movies according to their convictions.

An Iranian contingent of film distributors and producers, all of them women, were the unusual touch at the villa party. Besides Dev Anand, the star contingent from India includes the Bachchan parivar, and Anil Kapoor.

“What are the Indians doing in Cannes?” I heard someone ask in a taxi queue.The reasons anyone can attempt are inadequate. Is enough business conducted between global and Indian filmmakers really at the end of the fest? Without mulling over the question, perhaps it makes sense to just go with the flow.

After all, at Cannes access to every kind of filmmaking company is possible.. it depends on what you offer and what they want to buy. And vice versa. Even George Clooney may show up at a script discussion meeting. Most keep a lawyer handy, just in case a contract has to be drawn up.

India talking
By the way, amongst innumerable others, Goldie Hawn and Kurt Russell are scheduled to shoot their film titled Ashes to Ashes in India this year.

Meanwhile, an animated film WaltzwithBashir has made a huge impact in the way it deals with how political ferment displaces human lives permanently. A rain-soaked red carpet led to a screening of Woody Allen’s Viki Cristina Barcelona, a great film. Despite the rains, there wasn’t an empty seat in the auditorium.

Cab please
Incidentally, taxi queues are becoming longer even after late night screenings. And if there’s a common element at the taxi stands, it’s the Kenyan umbrella sellers, attempting to keep dry themselves at the festival that never sleeps.