Women's Film Society has organised the First International Women's Film Festival titled “Narir Chokhe Cholochchitra” at Kabi Sufia Kamal Auditorium of Bangladesh National Museum (BNM) and Central Public Library's auditorium in Shahbagh. The inauguration of the three -day festival was held on March 10 at Main Auditorium of BNM.
State Minister for Women and Children Affairs Meher Afroz Chumki inaugurated the festival as chief guest. Lailun Nahar Ekram, chairman of Women's Film Society and Mehedi Hasan, festival director spoke at the programme. Senior filmmaker Shamim Akther was present as special guest on the occasion.
Lailun Nahar Ekram said, “Film is the most powerful medium where common people and their hopes, dreams and longings have been properly highlighted. We have initiated the festival because of the significant role of women in many sectors in our country. The festival will be held every year with novel and refreshing look. As part of the festival, discussions, seminars, workshops, film appreciation courses will take place all the year round.”
Mehedi Hasan said, “Women's film festivals are now a frequent cultural activity in different countries. At the moment, the festival is very essential for our country as several women are trying to provide their best effort in this field. We want to focus on them. Besides film making, women should be more involved in other parts of the film industry like costume and set designing, makeup and art directorial activities.”
Shamim Akhter said, “It is a good sign that several women are now concentrating on making films. But we need more film critics and their writings should be published in our dailies newspapers and weeklies magazines.”
At the opening day, Bangladeshi director Shahnewaz Cacoly's “Uttorer Shur” and Polish director Marta Prus' “And Nothing Around” were screened.
At the inauguration, the society honoured six women filmmakers of the country - Shahnewaz Cacoly, Shamim Akther, Kohinoor Akhter, Nargis Akter, Arifa Parvin and Samia Zaman.
Twenty five films made by women filmmakers from countries like India, Iran, Afghanistan, Indonesia, Australia, Canada, France, England, Italy, Japan, Taiwan, Greece, Jordan, Kenya and Poland will be screened at the festival. The film society started its journey with a view to promoting women in films with the consideration of learning the cultures of the society in Bangladesh. It has focused women as writers, directors, actors, and producers; for them to explore the aesthetic value of film and to develop interest in technical skills of film, video and media arts.
The festival is dedicated to Rebecca, the first women filmmaker of Bangladesh.