KATHMANDU: The much awaited festival of South Asian documentaries Film South Asia (FSA) will begin from September 17. Speaking at a press meet organised at Hotel Yak and Yeti on September 16, Kanak Mani Dixit gave a brief insight about the festival and the documentaries that will be screened.
Films related to various issues such as migration, movie making, women’s issues, music, heart touching stories about children and many others will be shown.
This is the seventh edition of FSA with the slogan ‘Give me non-ficton’ and it had quite an encouraging number of entries. The films have come in from Afghanisthan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Myanmar, Nepal, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Tibet. Out of the 320 entries that were received 35 non-fiction films will be screened back to back at Jai Nepal and Kumari Cinema Hall from September 17 to 20. After the screenings discussions will also be held for some of the films as 15 filmmakers are expected to be present during the event.
Winners will also be chosen by a jury which will be chaired by Sadanand Menon, along with two other members Lalsawmliani Tochhawng and Isa Daudpota. The best film will receive the Ram Bahadur Trophy, along with USD 2,00, second best film and Best Debut filmmaker will receive USD 1,000.
Also present at the press meet was renowned actor Shabana Azmi who will be gracing the opening ceremony along with Shanker Pokharel, Minister for Information and Communication.
Speaking at the press meet Azmi gave her views on documentaries and film festivals. “I think the most important aspect for a documentary is that it has be good in craft, it should have a cinematic quality that should move me. Its not just the idea but the representation is equally important. I want to feel the whole experience while I watch it,” said Azmi.
Azmi thinks that art has the ability to create a climate of sensitivity for change to occur. And it was after watching a documentary a transformation came over her, “It can be a changing point and so I welcome such festivals,” she added.
According to Azmi these documentaries are the true representation of South Asia and it helps bridge the gap between different places. Though a well know film actor she personally believes that documentaries can have a greater impact on people, “The strength of documentaries is that it portrays the truth, it has a certain passion and honesty.”
Talking about FSA she said that it has been able to develop a loyal audience for documentaries, but she feels that it still needs to be taken to a wider audience.
Tickets for the films are priced at Rs 30 and are available at Mandala Book Point, Thamel Book Shop, Saraswati Book Centre, Dhokaima Café, Jai Nepal and Kumari Cinema.

For September 17

Hall A
• The Lighting Testimonies (113’), India 4 pm
Hall B
• Chilika Bank$ (60’),
India 3.30 pm
• Saamam, The Music (42’) 5pm