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The third edition of Russian Film Days, an initiative to strengthen the Indo-Russian relationship through cinematic and cultural exchange, begin today with a special tribute to Raj Kapoor. The film festival opened here at Siri Fort Auditorium with a theatrical performance dedicated to Raj Kapoor and his legendary film of the 1970 year, "Mera Naam Joker", which remains one of the most favourite Indian movies in Russia. Speaking at the inauguration, Russian Minister of Culture Vladimir Medinsky said that he looks forward to seeing "Indo- Russian cooperation turn into co-production of films". "Through this cooperation, we hope to develop audience for our film-makers in both the countries. We hope to turn this cooperation into co-production of films in future. "If Russian and Indian film-makers start making films together, we can show the Hollywood what we are capable of," Medinsky said. The Bollywood Dreamgirl, Hema Malini, who was recently honoured at the 4th Indian Film Festival of Russia (IFFR), also seconded the Russian minister's thoughts. "While I worked on several of my films all over Russia I realised the love they have for Indian films.
And there cannot be a better platform than cinema to strengthen the cultural ties between the two countries. "If co-production of films between Indian and Russian film-makers come to realisation, we will try to subsidise them for the production," she said. The festival opened with director Valery Todorovsky's dance drama The Bolshoi, that shows a young ballerina's struggle to perform at Bolshoi theatre. "The screening of this film will bring Indian audience in touch with Russian classical ballet, an artform Indians are not quite familiar with," Todorovsky said. During the festival over the course of three days, Delhi movie-goers will be able to watch 'The Bolshoi' at Siri Fort Auditorium, 'The Ghost of Sonora', 'Yana + Yanko', 'Kitchen: World chef battle', and 'Attraction' at DT Cinemas in Saket. Nikolai Kudashev, Russian ambassador to India, also noted that cinema is the only medium through which a common language can be found in the Eurasia region. "Through this festival we hope to send a message to the Indian audience that Russian language of cinema symbolises wisdom of the country and its people. "And language of cinema goes beyond the language of people. This is what we need right now in the Eurasia region to find a common language among people," the ambassador said. The festival will come to an end in Delhi on November 12 before moving to Mumbai. It will conclude at International Film Festival of India (IFFI) in Panaji from November 20.
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