Cannes 2019 has begun and with India Diva looks hittng our Instagram handles, what’s disappointing is that this year no Indian film or jury has made it to the festival. However, Indians have been successful in making to the global stage. Here’s a list of people who made it to the international jury.
1. Mrinal Sen (1982)
Mrinal Sen was amongst the first Indian filmmakers who made it to Cannes with his beautifully crafted, well-thought movies critical of social setups. His film KHARJI won the Jury Prize. In 1984, in the out of competition segment, his film KANDAHAR was screened. The same had it to the screen in the year 2010. His humanistic vision was reflected in movies like Neel Akasher Neechey, Bhuvan Shome, Ek Din Achanak, Padatik, and Mrigayaa. He changed the scene of movies in India in the 90s; he wanted to use the screen to the viewer’s benefit by enlightening and educating the masses. The Padma Bhushan Recipient made 30 features and dedicated 60 years to scripting and filmmaking. He has been religiously dedicated towards the world of movies, both national and international.
2. Mira Nair (1990)
Mira Nair, Filmmaker, and producer, won Audience Award, Cannes Film Festival for critically acclaimed movie Salaam Bombay! She also made it to the list or awardees at Cannes with Golden Camera Category award (Best First Film) for the same movie. Mira, an Indian-American, ambitioned her choices to international film markets from the very beginning. Most of the movies that she has worked on till now are movies designed on Indian grounds to appeal to the international audience. She wanted and still wants to create Indian Masala at global levels. And to pursue the same, she has ventured into production with Mirabai Films.
3. Arundhati Roy (2000)
Booker Prize winner, Arundhati Roy, is a social activist who campaigned against the network of 165 dams in India. She gained international recognition with her award book, The God of Small Things, which was translated 40 languages and sold several million copies worldwide. Her representation in Cannes was mostly controversial as she pressured the battle of power and powerless in India at the festival, leaving an awkward ground. She uses the power of words to bring ‘sense to reality’ and likes to call herself a ‘disciplined writer’.
4. Aishwarya Rai Bachchan (2003)
Aishwarya Rai Bachchan, the first female actress, who made it to Cannes in 2003. Not only is this Indian-Global star famous for her looks, but what most people miss out is that she was once the part of the Notable juror in Cannes. Over the years, she has remained one Indian who has always made it to international grounds (Her journey has been magnificent. She made her debut at the festival with Shekhar Kapur for a special screening of the legendary movie, Devdas. And in the year 2003, she made her mark as the jury member.
5. Nandita Das (2005)
Nandita Das, known for her critically acclaimed and appreciated the direction, Manto, once served the jury duty at Cannes. She has done over 30 feature films. Nandita has been known for her movie choices. She has worked in movies that stand opposed to the mainstream Bollywood, one such move being Fire, a lesbian love story with Shabana Azmi. Her film Manto received an overwhelming response at Cannes last year. Her ventures usually involve the audience to ask the right questions and undergo introspection.
6. Sharmila Tagore (2009)
Sharmila Tagore, like many others, had her film screened at Cannes and later made it to the red carpet as the Jury. She is one of the most accomplished actresses that Indian cinema has seen. She was amongst the first women on to serve as the Chairman at Central Board of Film Censor Board. She is also a versatile actress who started her career under Satyajit Roy’s direction and did some great roles in Bengali movies. She was one of those who made to the list of “bold and beautiful” Indian actresses when she appeared In a bikini on-screen in 'An Evening in Paris'.
7. Shekhar Kapur (2010)
Indian film director, producer, and actor, Shekhar Kapur, is known for his legendary work in national and international cinema. He had made his international presence with. Shekhar Kapur is known for his work of art because of films like Masoom, Mr.India, Bandit Queen and Elizabeth. His work spans India and West but he has remained true to his roots on international grounds. In 2012, he with R Balakrishnan advocated India as a “land of imagination…..storytelling”. He was of the view that for something to grow in the Indian market, it needs to be “Indianised”, implying that our nation is a culmination of competitive and complex cultures. It’s a market for growth.
8. Vidya Balan (2013)
The Parineeta debutant made her appearance as jury in Cannes in 2013.