By Utpal Borpujari / New Delhi
From India, the country that boasts itself of the world’s largest film industry, there is only one film that has made it to the official selection of the 2018 Cannes Film Festival, and that’s Nandita Das-directed biopic “Manto”.
The film, starring the brilliant NawazuddinSiddiqui in the title role, will have its world premiere in the competitive Un Certain Regard section of the festival. However, there is no Indian film in the most-prestigious Competition Section of the festival, which last saw an Indian film in 1994 – Shaji N Karun’s Malayalam “Swaham”.
Das’ biopic on Sadat HasanManto, one of the Subcontinent’s most-powerful writers whose stories on Partition still have the same impact as they did when they were written, is on one of the most-awaited films of 2018 in India for its subject and its relevance to the present times.
This is Das’ second directorial venture after the much-acclaimed “Firaq”. The multitalented actor-director has also served on the jury of the Cannes festival earlier.
The official selection of the world’s biggest and most-respected film festival was announced today, with the Competition Section boasting of some of the biggest names of contemporary world cinema, including Jean-Luc Godard (“Le LivreD’Image”, Switzerland), Jia Zhang-ke (“Ash is the Purest White”, China), Spike Lee (“Blackkklansman”, US), HirokazuKore-eda (Japan), MatteoGarrone (“Dogman”, Italy), Lee Chang-Dong (“Burning”, Korea), JafarPanahi(“Three Faces”) and AsgharFarhadi (“Everybody Knows”, Iran), Alice Rohrwacher (Italy) and Christophe Honoré(“Sorry Angel”) and StéphaneBrizé (“At War”, France).
The festival this time has made news even before the announcement of its film selections, by banning selfies in the much-coveted Red Carpet and also refusing to consider films made only for online platforms like Netflix that are not meant for theatrical release.
The complete list of official selection is available here: