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Hind Al Soulia - Riyadh - Saudi Gazette Report
JEDDAH —The 13th Asian Film Festival kicked off here at the weekend with the cutting of the ribbon by the consuls of various Asian countries at the Indian Consulate premises. The formal inauguration was followed by the screening of an Indian film “Andhadhun.”
The festival is meant to showcase the diversity of Asian cultures, traditions and art. Films are a unique way of crossing cultural boundaries. This year six films were selected by the Asian Consulates General Club (ACGC) to present the cultural diversity of Asian countries.
‘Andhadhun’ is a comedy crime thriller film, produced by Matchbox Pictures, and distributed by Viacom18 Motion Pictures. Directed by Sriram Raghavan, the 138-minute film stars Tabu and Ayushmann Khurrana in the lead role. It is open to various interpretations and is unpredictable from beginning to end and keeps the audience on their toes.
Film enthusiasts, diplomats of various countries, and prominent Indian community members were in attendance. They also relished the fine Indian cuisine during and post the screening of the film.
Earlier Consul General of India Mohammed Noor Rahman Sheikh threw light on the huge cultural footprint of Indian cinema. "It's a progress deemed very important for cultural exchanges and it further boosts understanding between peoples, traditions and nations," he added. "I hope that the Asian Film Festival will provide an excellent opportunity to introduce the diversity of Asian cultures, and also their similarities with the Arab culture, to our friends and audience here in Jeddah," he said in his opening remarks.
Consul (Commerce and PIC) Ms. Hamna Mariyam Khan welcomed the guests and gave a brief about the film. The message of consul general of the Philippines, who is also the co-coordinator of this year’s ACGC was also read out during the event. He also lauded India’s efforts in hosting the festival this year.
Aijaz Ahmed Khan, former president of the India Forum, said: ”This is the only event of its kind that celebrates Asian cultures, traditions and their diversity in the western part of the Kingdom. The Asian Film Festival has become a unique platform for cultural exchange between Saudi Arabia and Asian countries. I have been witnessing this festival for the last year eight years.”
The Asian Consuls General Club (ACGC) is organizing the public screening of various genres of films from six Asian countries during the festival, which ends on March 3.
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