MIAAC '09: New York's Indian Film Festival
By Rachna Kapur
November 17, 2009
The Mahindra Indo-American Arts Council Film Festival just completed it's ninth year of providing screenings of Indian independent and diaspora films. Throughout the years this festival has brought premieres of incredible movies such as Slumdog Millionaire, The Namesake, Water and many more. This year it brought 47 premieres, which included features, shorts and documentaries. The MIACC Film Festival started on November 11 and lasted until November 15, 2009. Some of the sponsors of the film festival included the Mahindra Group, KPMG, Continental Airlines, Saavn, and many more. The film festival had premieres of excellent movies such as "Tahaan", "Two Paise for Sunshine", "Bollywood Summer" and "Today's Special". The film festival also screened shorts such as "Medicine Man", "Free Parking" and "Good Night".
The film festival was a star-studded ordeal which included a number of Bollywood stars and filmmakers, such as Aasif Mandvi, Javed Akhtar, Manisha Koirala, Rahul Bose, Mira Nair, Sharmila Tagore, Sanjay Suri, Shabana Azmi, Sarita Choudhury and many more. MIACC '09 had a red carpet gala for the opening night, numerous post-screening discussions with actors such as Rahul Bose and filmmakers such as Mira Nair, industry panels, networking parties, which included an MTV Iggy party, and an evening with Sharmila Tagore and much more. This year the big winners from the festival included Aasif Mandvi as Best Male Actor for his role in "Today's Special" and the three time winner "Bombay Summer" which won in categories of Best Director, Best Actress, and Best Film.
As the years have progressed MIACC has become bigger and better, next year will be their tenth year anniversary and Aroon Shivdasani, festival director, stated they plan to have a number of surprises up their sleeves!
*Photos courtesy of Michael Toolan (www.michealtoolan.com)