Film Southasia

Background and History


Film Southasia (FSA) is a biennial festival that was set up in 1997 with the goal of popularising the documentary so that it entertains, informs and changes lives. In addition to the festival that takes place in Kathmandu every two years, FSA organizes screenings, discussions and workshops across Southasia to promote Southasian non-fiction within the Subcontinent and around the world. Film Southasia believes that film is a powerful medium that helps to not only in better represent the region internationally, but also contributes immensely in introspection and initiatives to bring change at the local level.

Ten editions of the festival have been held to date. At each festival, films are judged by a three-member Southasian jury and the best film is awarded the ‘Ram Bahadur Trophy’ for Best Film along with a citation and a cash prize of USD 2,000. The second best film is awarded a citation and cash prize of USD 1,000. The Best Debut Film is awarded the Tareque Masud Award and cash prize of USD 1,000. Past juries have been headed by well-known Southasian auteur filmmakers like Shyam Benegal, Goutam Ghose, Tareque Masud, Saeed Mirza and eminent journalist Mark Tully. Guests of honour at past festivals have included legendary poet and filmmaker Gulzar (FSA ’99), noted Indian filmmaker Mahesh Bhatt (FSA ’03) and the eminent actor and social activist Shabana Azmi (FSA ’09).


Travelling Film Southasia


After each FSA festival, about a dozen films are selected to travel across the Subcontinent and the world as the Travelling Film Southasia (TFSA) package. This mobile campaign to promote and popularise Southasian documentaries stops at more than 50 international venues between the parent FSA festivals that are held every two years in Kathmandu.

FSA CLEARING HOUSE


The FSA Secretariat hosts the Clearinghouse for Southasian Non-Fiction Films, which markets documentaries from the region for non-commercial and non-broadcast purposes. An increasing number of documentaries are being sold by the Clearinghouse since it was launched at FSA ’01. The Clearinghouse works on the basis of non-exclusive agreements with filmmakers, and thus far has limited itself to films entered for Film Southasia. The Clearinghouse also works continuously to bring filmmakers together with all interested parties and with each other. This facility created by Film Southasia, is providing added opportunity to the Southasian filmmakers to market their films and increase their radius of influence.

FSA Archive


The FSA Archive holds more than 1600 documentaries which have been submitted to FSA over the course of eight FSA festivals. With each festival, the FSA archive is expanding. The films we hold also forms the basis of the initial information fed into our online database. This database consists of details about the films in FSA archive, their makers, and other relevant information including contact information, year of production, and duration. Films in the FSA Archive can be made available in-house to researchers. Films in the FSA Archive will not be screened commercially.  

 

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  • ‘The Running Hawker’: Shot over a period of three years, the film follows the lives of running hawkers on the trains of South Bengal in India. These hawkers belong to that overwhelming majority of India’s working population (over 90%) who are frequently described as ‘informal’. This informality is constituted by a state of suspension in the zone between legality and illegality. The film attempts a presentation of the question of the hawkers’ livelihood at a time when the world of commodity trade is increasingly moving to bigger sites of supermarkets and malls in India. #fsa2017 #film #documentary #festival #southasia

    filmsouthasia: "‘The Running Hawker’: Shot over a period of three years, the film follows the lives of running hawkers on the trains of South Bengal in India. These hawkers belong to that overwhelming majority of India’s working population (over 90%) who are frequently described as ‘informal’. This informality is constituted by a state of suspension in the zone between legality and illegality. The film attempts a presentation of the question of the hawkers’ livelihood at a time when the world of commodity trade is increasingly moving to bigger sites of supermarkets and malls in India. #fsa2017 #film #documentary #festival #southasia"
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  • The festival is getting closer! Film Southasia Director Mitu Varma was interviewed today on the upcoming event and the soon-to-be-released schedule. Stay tuned. #fsa2017

    filmsouthasia: "The festival is getting closer! Film Southasia Director Mitu Varma was interviewed today on the upcoming event and the soon-to-be-released schedule. Stay tuned. #fsa2017"
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  • ‘The Colour of My Home’: No sting, no expose', no scoop on why/how/who engineered the pogrom…just an attempt to understand what it means to be uprooted and then "rehabilitated". What does it take to "move on" after a violent displacement? How do you explain a new home to your child? To live with the tag, "IDP" or "Internally Displaced Person", as described in official parlance? How do you reclaim citizenship in times such as these? #fsa2017 #festival #film #documentary #southasia

    filmsouthasia: "‘The Colour of My Home’: No sting, no expose', no scoop on why/how/who engineered the pogrom…just an attempt to understand what it means to be uprooted and then "rehabilitated". What does it take to "move on" after a violent displacement? How do you explain a new home to your child? To live with the tag, "IDP" or "Internally Displaced Person", as described in official parlance? How do you reclaim citizenship in times such as these? #fsa2017 #festival #film #documentary #southasia"
    3
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  • ‘The Cinema Travellers’: A Cannes prize-winning film, this is a journey with the traveling cinemas of India, which bring the wonder of the movies to faraway villages annually. Seven decades on, as their lorries and cinema projectors crumble and film reels become scarce, their audiences are lured by slick digital technology. Filmed over five years, The Cinema Travellers accompanies a shrewd exhibitor, a benevolent showman and a maverick projector mechanic who bear a beautiful burden – to keep the last traveling cinemas of the world running. The film has won ten national and international awards. #fsa2017 #film #festival #documentary #southasia #cannes

    filmsouthasia: "‘The Cinema Travellers’: A Cannes prize-winning film, this is a journey with the traveling cinemas of India, which bring the wonder of the movies to faraway villages annually. Seven decades on, as their lorries and cinema projectors crumble and film reels become scarce, their audiences are lured by slick digital technology. Filmed over five years, The Cinema Travellers accompanies a shrewd exhibitor, a benevolent showman and a maverick projector mechanic who bear a beautiful burden – to keep the last traveling cinemas of the world running. The film has won ten national and international awards. #fsa2017 #film #festival #documentary #southasia #cannes"
    18
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  • ‘The Books We Made’: Inspired by the work of Urvashi Butalia and Ritu Menon, who co-founded the first feminist publishing house in India: Kali for Women, the film is about the joy and pain of surviving in two non-lucrative professions: that of writing for small, discerning audiences, and that of publishing, translating and promoting work barely known outside its own linguistic region in India. It looks back on thirty years in publishing and focuses on the feminist politics and friendships that make this survival possible. #fsa2017 #film #documentary #southasia #festival

    filmsouthasia: "‘The Books We Made’: Inspired by the work of Urvashi Butalia and Ritu Menon, who co-founded the first feminist publishing house in India: Kali for Women, the film is about the joy and pain of surviving in two non-lucrative professions: that of writing for small, discerning audiences, and that of publishing, translating and promoting work barely known outside its own linguistic region in India. It looks back on thirty years in publishing and focuses on the feminist politics and friendships that make this survival possible. #fsa2017 #film #documentary #southasia #festival"
    12
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  • ‘Sri Lanka, ghosts of war (Sri Lanka, les fantômes de la guerre)’: Seven years after the end of the civil war in Sri Lanka, French journalist Vanessa Dougnac travels through the North of the country searching for testimonies and remains of the conflict. Thousands of civilians were estimated killed in the last months, when the Sri Lankan army launched its final offensive to crush the Tamil Tigers. The documentary tells about the mechanism of a so-called war on terror. It offers the victims the possibility to go against the official version of a perfectly-led military operation, and speak about their own dreadful experiences. #fsa2017 #film #documentary #festival #southasia

    filmsouthasia: "‘Sri Lanka, ghosts of war (Sri Lanka, les fantômes de la guerre)’: Seven years after the end of the civil war in Sri Lanka, French journalist Vanessa Dougnac travels through the North of the country searching for testimonies and remains of the conflict. Thousands of civilians were estimated killed in the last months, when the Sri Lankan army launched its final offensive to crush the Tamil Tigers. The documentary tells about the mechanism of a so-called war on terror. It offers the victims the possibility to go against the official version of a perfectly-led military operation, and speak about their own dreadful experiences. #fsa2017 #film #documentary #festival #southasia"
    5
    0
  • ‘Soz - A Ballad of Maladies’: Of folk, rock and hip-hop, this documentary captures the rhythm and blues of resistance in Kashmir valley. It is a portrait of those musicians and artists who have turned their art into weapons of resistance during periods of heightened state repression and violence in the region. #fsa2017 #festival #film #documentary #southasia

    filmsouthasia: "‘Soz - A Ballad of Maladies’: Of folk, rock and hip-hop, this documentary captures the rhythm and blues of resistance in Kashmir valley. It is a portrait of those musicians and artists who have turned their art into weapons of resistance during periods of heightened state repression and violence in the region. #fsa2017 #festival #film #documentary #southasia"
    14
    0
  • ‘Shepherdess of the Glaciers (La Bergere Des Glaces)’: Way up in Ladakh—at 16,500 feet, somewhere in the Gya-Miru Valley—lives a shepherdess with a flock of 250 sheep and pashmina goats on a huge deserted rock-strewn mountain. Over a year, Tsering shares with us her lonely life among animals in an extreme environment. In spite of these tough conditions, she shows an astonishingly strong spirit. She preserves a traditional ecological way of living. But for how long ? #fsa2017 #festival #documentary #southasia #film

    filmsouthasia: "‘Shepherdess of the Glaciers (La Bergere Des Glaces)’: Way up in Ladakh—at 16,500 feet, somewhere in the Gya-Miru Valley—lives a shepherdess with a flock of 250 sheep and pashmina goats on a huge deserted rock-strewn mountain. Over a year, Tsering shares with us her lonely life among animals in an extreme environment. In spite of these tough conditions, she shows an astonishingly strong spirit. She preserves a traditional ecological way of living. But for how long ? #fsa2017 #festival #documentary #southasia #film"
    8
    0
  • ‘Save Gangamaya’: Ms. Gangamaya Adhikari and Mr. Nanda Prasad Adhikari, a couple from Gorkha (Nepal) sat on a hunger protest in front of the Prime Minister’s residence, demanding justice for the 2004 murder of their teenage son Krishna Prasad Adhikari. They were forcefully admitted at Bir Hospital, however on September 22, 2014, Nanda Prasad breathed his last at his 333 days of hunger protest. On October 19, 2014, the Nepali government promised justice to Gangamaya and ended her 359 days of fast-unto-death. However, justice has not yet been served, and despite her very weak and deteriorating health Gangamaya once again begins her indefinite hunger protest. #fsa2017 #festival #film #documentary #southasia

    filmsouthasia: "‘Save Gangamaya’: Ms. Gangamaya Adhikari and Mr. Nanda Prasad Adhikari, a couple from Gorkha (Nepal) sat on a hunger protest in front of the Prime Minister’s residence, demanding justice for the 2004 murder of their teenage son Krishna Prasad Adhikari. They were forcefully admitted at Bir Hospital, however on September 22, 2014, Nanda Prasad breathed his last at his 333 days of hunger protest. On October 19, 2014, the Nepali government promised justice to Gangamaya and ended her 359 days of fast-unto-death. However, justice has not yet been served, and despite her very weak and deteriorating health Gangamaya once again begins her indefinite hunger protest. #fsa2017 #festival #film #documentary #southasia"
    14
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  • ‘Satisal In Inferno (Dadelo Bhitra ka Satisaal)’: A tribute to singers, who, against all odds, have been lending their voices to marginalized underdogs in Nepal for over 50 years. #fsa2017 #film #documentary #festival #southasia

    filmsouthasia: "‘Satisal In Inferno (Dadelo Bhitra ka Satisaal)’: A tribute to singers, who, against all odds, have been lending their voices to marginalized underdogs in Nepal for over 50 years. #fsa2017 #film #documentary #festival #southasia"
    14
    0