Of screen tests and behind the scene tests!

  • Rohit Vats, Hindustan Times, Panaji
  • Updated: Nov 26, 2014 19:26 IST

A filmmaker known for launching new heroines was spotted doing spontaneous screen tests with some aspiring actresses at the festival. The test included making faces and delivering strange dialogues, that too inside the makeshift lounge, in full public view. Though the filmmaker hardly saw anything other than his phone during the entire conversation, the potential heroines kept trying to woo him.

A lot of aspiring actors are hovering around the IFFI venues in glamorous dresses and high heels. A common delegate attending the festival mistook one of them as a celebrity and started clicking her pictures. The girl remained unperturbed till the time the guy asked, "Madam aapka naam kya hai?"

Nana Patekar is an intense man. You think twice before asking him anything. Probably this was the reason the IFFI organisers hesitated in asking him to wrap up the press conference as another interview was scheduled there. Finally they did and Nana very candidly retorted, "Aapne pehle bataya tha? Nahi na, isiliye ab main bolta rahunga." The officer looked helpless even when Nana had already talked for more than 90 minutes?

It seems more than half of Panaji is dependent on the tourists for their daily bread and butter. It has invoked a sense of belonging in the natives about the guests. Probably this is the reason a taxi driver blasts a fellow cabbie for being too pushy and rude to a passenger. Very candidly he threatens his colleague, "Tumko police mangta hai na?" To his surprise the passenger turned out to be a police personnel. For a second there is an awkward silence and then both of them smile at each other.


(Satish Bate/HT Photo) Right from the airport to the venue, the organisers of 45th International Film Festival of India have painted the city with their colours. At every crossing, you will find a colourful peacock staring at you. It's a pity that the locals are blissfully unaware of the huge function happening at their doorstep. Though the students from local schools have been deployed for respective duties at the film festival, most of the people don't bother about the cultural extravaganza.


The smell of rotten fish has become synonymous with old Goa. After every high tide, the people wait for the next one and in between they try their best to survive the deadly stench. The owners of old French style cottages, full of palm and coconut trees, look funny with a handkerchief wrapped around their faces. It must have been a tough task to live with the stinking reality of their otherwise beautiful city.

Despite being one of the preferred hangout destinations in India, Panaji remains a sleepy and lazy city. People do look forward to doing business with foreigners but they don't want to spoil their evenings in chasing potential clients. As a result, a traveller drinks in the middle of the road while the bar in front of him remains locked. And, yes, there are more outsiders on the road than locals at any point of the day.

Two random people meet at INOX, one of the venues for IFFI. Hours later, they meet again on the nearby road as they are in search of some food. Thirty minutes later they again meet on another road. They haven't got any decent restaurant for more than 120 minutes. Apparently, it's hard to find a restaurant without bar in the vicinity of old Panaji church. By the way, the church is one of the most beautiful ones you will see in India.


Old Goa Medical College (GMC) which is now IFFI office been illuminated on the eve of inauguration of 45th International Film Festival Of India, in Panaji, Goa. (IANS)

Who says government servants don't work. Ask anyone who has come from Delhi or Mumbai or any other place to Goa to cover IFFI. They will tell you stories of morally upright Press Information Bureau (PIB) officers who are working tirelessly to ensure a good and fulfilling experience for cinema lovers. It's just a small example that they got yours truly his accreditation card even when the concerned office was closed some 45 minutes ago. Hope they remain this way for the rest of the event.

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