Samiksha Jaiswal (Editor)

International Film Festival of India

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Goa, India



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Entertainment Society of Goa

The International Film Festival of India (IFFI), founded in 1952, is one of the most significant film festivals in Asia. Held annually in the state of Goa, on the western coast of the country, the festival aims at providing a common platform for the cinemas of the world to project the excellence of the film art; contributing to the understanding and appreciation of film cultures of different nations in the context of their social and cultural ethos; and promoting friendship and cooperation among people of the world.


The festival is conducted jointly by the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, Directorate of Film Festivals and the Government of Goa. The 46th edition (latest) of IFFI was held at Panjim Goa from 20 November 2015 with A R Rahman as the Chief Guest.


Ayam nijam paroveti gananā laghuchetasām, Udāracharitānām tu vasudhaiva kutumbakam

(Extract from the Vedic scripture Maha Upanishad, meaning "This is for me and that is for other – is the thinking of a narrow-minded person. For those who are broad-minded, liberals, or noble people, the entire world is a one big family.")

Nothing exemplifies the Indian notion of non-violence and peaceful coexistence as "Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam", the phrase in which IFFI and its theme are rooted.


The 1st edition of IFFI was organised by the Films Division, Government of India, with the patronage of the first Prime Minister of India. Held in Mumbai from 24 January to 1 February 1952, the Festival was subsequently taken to Madras, Delhi, Calcutta and Trivandrum. In all it had about 40 features and 100 short films. In Delhi, the IFFI was inaugurated by Prime Minister Pt Jawaharlal Nehru on 21 February 1952.

The first edition was non-competitive, had 23 countries including the United States participating with 40 feature films and about a hundred short films. The Indian entries for the festival were Awara (Hindi), Patala Bhairavi (Telugu), Amar Bhoopali (Marathi) and Babla (Bengali). This was the first International Film Festival held anywhere in Asia. The notable films shown during the festival were Bicycle Thieves, Miracle of Milan & Open City from Italy. Yukiwarisoo (Japan), Dancing Fleese (UK), The River (USA) and Fall of Berlin (USSR).

It was for the first time that the Indian Film Industry was exposed to a vast range of outstanding post-war era films. From the 3rd edition in January 1965, IFFI became competitive. It has since then moved to Trivandrum, capital of Kerala. In 1975 the Filmotsav, non-competitive and to be held in other film-making cities in alternate years, was introduced. Later, Filmotsavs were merged in IFFI. In 2004 the IFFI was moved to Goa from Trivandrum. Since then IFFI has been an annual event and competitive.

IFFI 2015

The 46th International Film Festival of India, began in Panaji, Goa on 20 November 2015 and drew to close on 30 November 2015. A total of more than 7,000 delegates participated and the festival closed with the film - ‘The Clan’- from Argentina.

Following were the key highlights of the 11-day-long festival:

  • UNESCO Fellini Medal was awarded for the first time at IFFI 2015.
  • The Kingdom of Spain was the focus country of IFFI 2015.
  • 46th IFFI had an international jury headed by the chairperson, Shekhar Kapur along with UK based director Michael Radford, Palestinian based Israeli director Ms Suha Arraf, German Actress Julia Jentsch and South Korean filmmaker Jeon Kyu-hwan.
  • The 13-member Feature Jury was headed by Chairperson Aribam Syam Sharma while the seven-member Non-Feature jury was led by Chairperson Rajendra Janglay.
  • Total number of premiers (World, International, Asia and India) during the festival – 120
  • Total numbers of films received as entries - 790
  • Finally selected films for screening - 182 (Foreign Cinema)
  • Countries represented – 90
  • Opening Film - The Man Who Knew Infinity
  • Mid Fest Film - The Danish Girl
  • Closing Film - El Clan
  • 47 films in Indian Panorama section (Feature and Non-feature)
  • New Horizons from North-East- A special retrospective on ace film-maker Aribam Shyam Sharma and special section on new generation film-makers from the North-East
  • Lifetime Achievement Award to Oscar-winning Russian film-maker, actor and head of Russian Cinematographer’s Union, Nikita Mikhalkov for his contributions to world cinema.
  • Centenary Film Personality Award conferred upon Internationally acclaimed Music composer Illayaraja during the Opening Ceremony.
  • Golden Peacock Award winners

    The first Prize for Best Film in 1987 was a Special Jury Award. 2006 and 2007 were also Special Jury Awards. In 2009 the Best Feature Film prize was a Silver Peacock Award.


  • The first IFFI was held in 1952, and American director Frank Capra attended as a part of the US delegation.
  • On the eve of IFFI 2006, journalist and author Mario Cabral e Sa's book Location Goa, highlighting Goa's contribution to the Hindi film world, was released on 21 November 2006.
  • Since 2004, Goa has hosted IFFI every year. This brings in more visitors to the State, and also coincides with the novenas and feast of the 16th-century Basque missionary-saint Francis Xavier.
  • References

    International Film Festival of India Wikipedia

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