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With a motive to showcase meaningful global cinema to children and youth, NGO Smile Foundation has announced a Smile International Film Festival for Children and Youth (SIFFCY), which will be held here from December 21 to 27.
SIFFCY, to be held at the Siri Fort Auditorium here, will premiere over 50 independent feature-length films, short films and documentaries during the week-long gala.
Directors Nagesh Kukunoor, Hansal Mehta, Tigmanshu Dhulia, Santosh Sivan, Jahnu Barua, and Oscar-winning sound designer Resul Pookutty have come on board as the advisory members of the festival, along with noted film critics Saibal Chatterjee and Utpal Borpujari.
"Our objective is to sensitise the masses through meaningful cinema. We are curating films and selecting films with a social message," Jitendra Mishra, SIFFCY festival director, told IANS.
Treating it more like a campaign than a festival, Mishra shared that the Smile Foundation will take the films to other remote areas of the country as well. They will project the films there so that children and youth who don't even have access to auditoria can be exposed to the content.
"SIFFCY will not end in seven days. We plan to reach out to smaller cities after the festival. Our representatives and volunteers will travel and show the films in as many places as possible. Smaller cities have small auditoriums, but in villages, we take our projectors and players."
"We will show films or documentaries in places where some have not even seen a film before in their lives," Mishra added.
Some of the films will be those that are made by children and students. Mishra believes that some "five-year-old children are super talented and have been at it".
Leading international organisations, including British Film Institute, Cinekid, Buster and Wilde Ganzen as well as Children's Film Society, which is an autonomous body under the Ministry of Information and broadcasting, have also collaborated as partners for the festival.
The Smile Foundation has produced films of all kinds -- be it a documentary, short and feature, winning several awards for its endeavours in all the categories. The feature film "I Am Kalam" received several accolades.