Kashish Pride Film Festival opens with French film ‘Spirit of Ecstasy’ | Hindi Movie News – Times of India

Kashish Pride Film Festival opens with French film ‘Spirit of Ecstasy’ | Hindi Movie News – Times of India

The opening night of the 15th edition of KASHISH Pride Film Festival 2024 had actors, filmmakers, writers, LGBTQIA+ persons and allies throng the iconic Liberty Cinema.
Present at the opening ceremony were celebrities like Kiran Rao, Shweta Prasad Basu, Sonali Kulkarni, Barun Sobti, Lillete Dubey, Dolly Thakore, Arunaraje Patil, Viveck Vaswani, Meghna Ghai Puri and others.
A hilarious standup act by writer, poet, filmmaker Varun Grover, and a lavni and kathak jugalbandi by Aditi Bhagwat and Harshada Jambekar, wowed the audience.

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The hosts for the night were Anu Menon aka Lola Kutty and SeduQtress SoniQa who entertained audiences with their fun banter. Sridhar Rangayan, festival director, Kashish, mentioned how this edition of the festival was special and the change in the name indicated Kashish’s new mission of being inclusive of the non-queer community too.
Filmmaker Kiran Rao said, “It was a wonderful being a part of the jury. We judged feature films and shorts from all over the world. I got to see such a video variety of filmmaking styles, some experimental films, some were extremely personal, some felt like pushing the envelope of filmmaking a lot. It was interesting to watch the voices of these filmmakers from different countries, some were directing as well as acting. For me it was a huge pleasure and a leading experience.”
Viveck Vaswani, actor, writer, filmmaker added, “When I began supporting Kashish years ago, at that time, it was considered a very brave thing to do. But today it is mainstream and all of us support LGBTQIA+ and I think hats natural. Saagar and Sridhar are sweet on the outside but are rock on the inside and they have done a lot for this movement. 15 years is not a joke.”
Actor Barun Sobti who was a part of the Narrative Jury at Kashish said, “At one point in time I thought I had bitten off more than I could chew! There were so many films and I found them remarkable. I have always been a big fan of short stories and here I saw some terrific shorts. I love binge watching anyway, so I had a great time as a judge.”
Kashish opened at Liberty Cinema with the French film ‘Spirit of Ecstasy’ that is about a gender-questioning stock-market trader who is determined to make it in the world of finance; not for the glory or wealth, but because it’s leading her on the path to freedom.
‘Spirit of Ecstasy’ director Helena Klotz said, “I am very honored to open the KASHISH Pride Film Festival with our film, and I am also very happy for the film to travel to you. All the more that my desire to make films arose in Calcutta when I was 7, I was there with my father who was directing his first film there… I hope you will appreciate Jeanne as much as I did. I wish you all an excellent festival!”
Mrinali Gole of Liberty Cinema who was present at the event, dedicated her association with Kashish to her late husband, Nazir Hoosein. Kashish has been held at the same venue since 2014.

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