Journalist-turned-filmmaker Vinod Kapri today said that he is honoured that his Hindi film "Pihu" will open the Panorama segment of IFFI in Goa but at the time feels bad for the directors of "S Durga" and "Nude".
The information and broadcasting ministry's decision to drop the two films from the list, submitted to them by a 13- member jury, has kicked up a controversy and resulted in the resignation of jury chairman Sujoy Ghosh and two other members.
"I don't know what conspired between the jury and the I&B ministry. So I am not the right person to comment on it. But whatever is happening is unfortunate," Kapri told PTI in an interview.
"We have made 'Pihu' with lot of hardships. It is a small-budget film. It was stuck for a year after our producer passed away. We have managed to complete the film and get another producer on board. We are focusing on the film, we are honoured."
Kapri said being a filmmaker he understands what the two directors must be going through.
"Whoever the filmmakers are, they have put their heart and soul for a film. I feel for them. But at the same time, 'Pihu' is the opening film and we are living that moment and looking forward to the opening."
Some of the filmmakers, whose films are a part of the Panorama, are planning to protest against the ministry's decision at the festival but Kapri said he is not one of them.
"There is no question of protest for us. I don't know what really happened between the jury and I&B ministry. There are many technicalities and many sides to a story. Filmmakers are saying one thing, the government is saying something else. Without knowing anything, it is not right to say anything."
Kapri said the International Film Festival of India (IFFI) is a prestigious film extravaganza and one should show respect towards the movies that have been selected.
"I read one of the jury members' interview - Ruchi Narain, who said there are some issues with the two films but there are other 26 films and we should not insult these films.
"I liked her approach. If there is an issue, they should be discussed and taken up to the forum but they should also respect other films that are going to be screened."
Kapri said he was unaware that "Nude", which was one of the films that were dropped from the list, was recommended as the opening film of the segment.
"Pihu", a social thriller, is based on a true incident reported in a national daily in 2014, where a four-year-old girl was left alone at home by her parents.
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