India Student Hub presents

Women's Film Festival 2020



Washington D.C. | New Jersey

February 28th - March 1st

The year 2020 is significant for women's rights movement globally as it marks the 100th anniversary of the women's suffrage in the United States, the 25th anniversary of the Beijing Platform for Action, and the 20th anniversary of the Women, Peace and Security agenda launched with UNSC Resolution 1325.

To commemorate all these milestones of women empowerment and to advance feminine voice in shaping a #NewIndia, the Embassy of India Student Hub is organizing a 2-day Women's Film Festival in Washington D.C. at the end of this month (29th February and 1st March) preceded by an Opening Night at the Embassy of India (28th February). A shorter iteration will be hosted in New Jersey on 28 February.

NEW JERSEY EDITION: 28 FEB

WASHINGTON D.C.: 28 FEB - 1 MAR

The Theme: Insights of Women of 'Bombay'

Despite genuine engagement and contributions in government, business, arts, science, etc, there is still a sense that women are competing in a patriarchal structure on rules made by and for men. The Film Festival strives to unlock different perspectives that enable the feminine divine energy in all of us to be seen, heard, and accounted for in defining societal progress and personal success. The theme for India Student Hub Women’s Film Festival is Insights from Women of Bombay. The women of Bombay have a unique perspective for three reasons:

  1. As a melting pot of cultures and the home of Bollywood, Bombay serves as an extraordinary platform that allows fusion of traditions and world ideas.
  2. Some say that as a city/civilization, Bombay has already peaked and therefore has a lot of lessons from which it can share perspective.
  3. Although not without setbacks, women in Bombay have relatively greater freedom than counterparts in other places to craft a different way of being.

Registration

Admission for Opening Night: (Washington D.C.) Exclusive event by invitation only. Request an invitation at: https://forms.gle/ABkWh8kdW6dzBsQt7

Admission for Film Festival: Free and Open to all - https://forms.gle/tLXtWuARuGmZaNwD7

Admission for NJIT Events: https://forms.gle/3VREDUSkZ7Lb5FD48


Washington D.C. Area Films

Saturday 29th February 2020

George Mason University

The Hub: Rooms 4+5

SESSION #1: 1pm - 4pm EST

Zubeidaa (2:33)

Based on the real life of Zubeidaa Begum, a free bird who kept getting caged in societal norms. From forsaking her love for dance, to being abandoned by her husband; she falls for the charming ways of a Maharaja. Do ways of the royalty liberate her or suffocate her? How does she finally break free? As Zubeidaa struggles to live life on her own terms- this is a fascinating story of a truly unique character. Director: Shyam Benegal

SESSION #2: 5pm - 8pm EST

My Home India (45 mins)

Little is known about ‘Little Poland’ in India. Archival and following the life of Kira Banasinska, the lady who was instrumental for thousands of Poles finding passage and home in India during WW – II, this film documents her struggles and determination along the way. Director: Anjali Bhushan

Lijjat Sisterhood (29 mins)

Can sisterhood be a business-model? A story of good-will, empowerment, entrepreneurship; and of course, true feminism this simple women’s co-op that started on a terrace in one of the many quaint gullies of Bombay has many lessons to teach. Director: Kadhambari Chintamani, Ajit Oommen

Transqueen India (11 mins):

Who do we identify as women? A peek into the first of its kind beauty + talent pageants in India for trans-women. Director: Naman Saraiya


Sunday 1st March 2020

Georgetown University

Copley Formal Lounge

SESSION #1: 1pm - 4pm EST

Bombay Rose (1:33)

The story of a flower-girl in the day & a bar dancer by night; her strong and sensitive little sister; her English teacher - the old and jaded Ms. D’Souza; and the men in their respective lives. A nostalgic caricature set against the backdrop of an almost bygone Bombay era. Director: Gitanjali Rao

Nayantara’s Necklace (20 mins)

One half of the world doesn’t know how the other exists. If they did, would life be the same for them? Where one woman’s life is coming to a standstill is where another’s dreams are vicariously fulfilled. A short-lived tryst of friendship between two happiness seeking women. Director: Jaydeep Sarkar

Made for Each other (5 mins)

The short film depicts the relationship between Mumbaikars and local trains. We are introduced to the story of a teacher who juggles the trials and tribulations that come with being a working woman, caretaker and mother in Mumbai- with assistance from the trusted local trains. Director: Akshay Ambadas Temkar


SESSION #2: 5pm - 8pm EST

Love Sonia (2h)

Hard-hitting and gut-wrenching are the ways of a brothel. A peek into the lives of women of Kamathipura through the story of a minor girl trafficked under the pretext of uniting her with her sister who too has been trafficked into the red-light world in Mumbai. Director: Tabrez Noorani

Can’t Hide me (26 mins)

What does it take to make a mark in a man’s world? Three women, their struggles and their inspiring stories of resilience! This film follows the narratives of a national-level rugby player, a Yakshagana performer and a documentary photographer. Director: Madhuri Mohindar



New Jersey Films

Friday, February 28th, 2020

11:30 AM - 2:30 PM

Register Here

My Home India (45 minutes)

Little is known about ‘Little Poland’ in India. Archival and following the life of Kira Banasinska, the lady who was instrumental for thousands of Poles finding passage and home in India during WW – II, this film documents her struggles and determination along the way.

Lijjat Sisterhood (29 mins)

Can sisterhood be a business-model? A story of good-will, empowerment, entrepreneurship; and of course, true feminism this simple women’s co-op that started on a terrace in one of the many quaint gullies of Bombay has many lessons to teach.

Can’t Hide Me (26 mins)

What does it take to make a mark in a man’s world? Three women, their struggles and their inspiring stories of resilience! This film follows the narratives of a national-level rugby player, a Yakshagana performer and a documentary photographer.


Screening Rights

Thank you for all your help & support for screening permissions

  • Public Service Broadcasting Trust
  • Directorate of Film Festivals- Ministry of Information & Broadcasting- Government of India
  • Exceed Entertainment
  • Vice
  • Film Company
  • Nin Sippy Films
  • Pernod Ricard
  • Pocket Films
  • Apricot Sky
  • Film Polska

Press Kit and Official Posters

Film Festival 2021

India Student Hub is also introducing the 2021 Women’s Film Festival theme and encourages filmmakers to submit proposals for the 2021 Women’s Film Festival screening. In honor of the 2020 Olympics and the fact that all the 2020 Padma Vibhushan award nominees are talented Indian women sports leaders, the 2021 Women’s Film Festival will focus on Determination and Grit: Indian Women in Sports.

Corporate Sponsors:

Official Contributors:

Screening Permissions by:

Special Recognition

Mrs. Hemal Shringla: Film Enthusiast, Festival Collaborator

Ms. Anjali Bhushan: Film Director (My Home India) (Instagram: anjaimago17, Facebook: anjalibhushannugyal)

Ms. Priya Samant Parulekar: Founder of EarthFrendz, Impact Advisor, Social Entrepreneur (Facebook: Priya Samant Parulekar, Instagram: priyasp_1234)

Mr. Tabrez Noorani: Producer (Love Sonia)

Ms. Tulika Srivastva: Executive Producer and Director- Open Frame, P.S.B.T. https://psbt.org/

Mr. Jaydeep Sarkar: Screenwriter (Nayantara’s Necklace)

Ms. Barbara Hawthorne: President, Barbara Hawthorne Interiors www.barbarahawthorninteriors.com

Ms. Jan Du Plain: Embassy Liaison, Cultural Tourism D.C. https://www.culturaltourismdc.org/portal/