LIFFT India Filmotsav 2017 took place in Lonavala near Mumbai from September 1-5. Indian films ‘Parched’, ‘Lathe Joshi’ and ‘Mango Tree’ grabbed the lime light. The award show highlighted 20 films all over the world along with the stage performing arts. Leena Yadav’s “Parched” and Mangesh Joshi’s “Lathe Joshi” took three awards home, while “Mango Dreams” bagged two awards alone.
Riju Bajaj, founder and festival director, expressed his feeling saying, “The festival is diverse from other festivals we see around. The name itself is described like — LIFFT India. When you lift India, you lift it through stories, films, books, education, entertainment, and awareness.”
The evening of appreciations started with the Vidya Shah, melodious musician’s fascinating performance. The event included veteran actress Tanuja, director Avinash Das, journalist Nandita Puri, veteran filmmaker Govind Nihalani, actress Mita Vasishth, former director of National School of Drama and veteran actor Ram Gopal Bajaj. All the Awardees attended the LIFFT India Filmotsav 2017 night.
Before presenting the awards, late veteran actor Om Puri was paid respect by remembering his contribution to the entertainment industry. Musician Leslie Lewis rolled the night with some of his albums which aren’t released in the market yet. The audience enjoyed the music to the fullest.
LIFFT India Filmotsav 2017 Higlights
Narayan was honored for his work in Fine Arts.
“Parched” which stood as one of the highlights of award night which included Radhika Apte in its cast won three trophies in the categories of Best Cinematography was won by Russell Carpenter, Best Ensemble Cast and Best Costume which was deserved by Ashima Belapurkar.
“Lathe Joshi” on the other hand won the Best Feature Film, Best Supporting Actor Female gained by Ashvini Girl, and the Best Director Award went to Mangesh Joshi.
“Mango Dreams” bagged two awards as Pankaj Tripathi won the Supporting Role Category Male and John Upchurch for the Best Screenplay.
There were total 29 categories of awards.The jury consists of Gopal Bajaj, Dolly Thakore, Gyan Sarah, Atul Tiwari, Suhail Tatami, Shefali Bhushan and Parag Chhapekar. They chose Peter Engleman from Hungary for his project “#Help” under Best Student Film category.
Filmmaker Govind Nihalani’s debut Marathi film “Ti Ani Itar” and Sunaina Bhatnagar’s “Dear Maya” grabbed the Jury Award.
“Eh Janam Tumhare Lekhe” won the Best Biopic award.
Ricardo Herrera won the Best Actor Male for his performance in “Shining Moon” while Jaya Seal took the Best Actor Female award home for her work in “Alifa.”
Sandeep Kothari clinched the Best Child Actor Male award for his performance in “Pinti Ka Sabun.”
The Best Child Actress award was won by Gun Mihani for her work in “Mum,” while “Pinti Ka Sabun” directed by Pramod Pathak took home the Best Children’s Film.
Pragati Kolage won Best Producer for her debut Marathi film “Palyadwasi.”
William Gonzalez acquired best Debut Director for “She, The Sergeant Matache.”
Iranian director Sadegh Jayaraj achieved the award for Best Documentary for “Weavers of Imagination.”
Best Green Film was slated to be “Stolen river” which is based on Indian river Ganga by Christina Danka.
“In the previous year, I had organized another festival in Lonavala. Unfortunately, I am no more a part of it,” Bajaj said as multiplex owners took the festival.