The burgeoning Bangladesh film industry made an impact at both South Asian film market Film Bazaar and the International Film Festival of India (IFFI), Goa.
Bangladesh feature film “Agantuk” (aka “The Stranger”) by Biplob Sarkar was named as unanimous winner of the Prasad DI award, conferred by the Film Bazaar Recommends jury in Goa. Besides Sarkar, there was a strong contingent from Bangladesh including Abu Shahed Emon (“No Ground Beneath the Feet”), Bijon, who is part of the “Solo” team that has scored CNC funding and Redoan Rony, head of streamer Chorki.
In addition, four Bangladeshi films are selected at IFFI. Noor Iman’s “A House With No Name,” produced by Emon, Akram Khan’s “A Tale of Two Sisters” and Khandaker Sumon’s “Memories of Gloomy Monsoons” all had their world premieres at the festival, while Gias Uddin Selim’s “Vice and Virtue” had its international premiere. Popular actor Jaya Ahsan, star of “A Tale of Two Sisters,” who acts in both Indian and Bangladeshi films, was part of a large film cohort from Bangladesh attending IFFI.
“There was a selection of four feature films this year. It’s a pretty rare case, which means there is a high volume of quality projects being made every year. With the rise of OTT [streaming] and the Bangladeshi content industry I guess this is one of the best times in Bangladeshi cinema history,” Emon told Variety.
“After COVID-19, everyone is eager to get new opportunities and therefore they are participating in different film labs, workshops and networking programs like Film Bazaar. More than 10 delegates of producers, directors, distributors and buyers have attended Film Bazaar with various projects in the coproduction market, viewing room and producer workshop. I think in upcoming years it will grow even more in participation as there are a lot more interesting projects are coming up.”