FTII student’s short film bags Cannes award | India News

PUNE: ‘Sunflowers were the first ones to know,’ a film made by a student of the Film and Television Institute of India (FTII) here, won the first prize at the La Cinef category of the 77th Cannes Film Festival on Friday.
The film won the first prize among 18 shorts selected from 2,263 entries by 555 film schools all over the world. It is a 15-minute Kannada short-film based on a folklore from Karnataka and directed by doctor-turned filmmaker Chidanand Naik.
It was shot by Suraj Thakur, edited by Manoj V and sound directed by Abhishek Kadam as a part of their final year project for the television unit course of the institute. The first prize carries a grant of ₹13.5lakh.
“This is one of the folklores widely known as ‘Ajji Koli’ in Karnataka and has actor Jahangir featuring in it. I want to now work on making feature films in Kannada,” Naik had told TOI.
‘Catdog’, another student film from FTII, directed by Ashmita Guha Neogi, had won the award in the same category in 2020 at the 73rd Cannes Film Festival.
“This is a historic moment for Indian cinema. Indian films have been receiving accolades at international stage, particularly FTII has performed remarkably well at Cannes with its student films being screened at the festival in the past few years. This is the first time a film by a student from a one-year television course of FTII was selected and won at the prestigious Cannes Film Festival,” the institute said in a statement.
“Sunflowers were the first ones to know” (“Suryakanthi Hooge Modhalu Gothagidu” in Kannada) is a story of an elderly woman who steals the village rooster. To bring the rooster back, a prophecy is invoked, sending the old lady’s family into exile.

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