Mumbai, Oct 17 (IANS) Mumbaikars will get to savour the best of Asian cinema, including from Mongolia, with an eight-day-long film festival kicking off here Thursday evening.
Maharashtra Chief Minister Vilasrao Deshmukh Thursday evening inaugurated the seventh edition of the Asian Film Festival. The festival will showcase 80 films from 20 countries of Asia as well as from Palestine and Egypt.
Speaking on the occasion, Deshmukh highlighted Mumbai as a destination for the Asian filmmakers and urged them to explore the city for their cinematic ventures.
'Mumbai has emerged in the forefront in providing the basic infrastructure for filmmakers as the studios, locations and other necessary things for filmmaking have evolved massively over a period of time. Hence, I request all the filmmakers across Asia to explore the city,' said Deshmukh.
He said films had evolved greatly over a period of time as the gap between offbeat and commercial films have decreased.
Citing examples he said: 'Non commercial movies like 'Mumbai Meri Jaan', 'Wednesday' 'Welcome To Sajjanpur', 'Chakde India' and many more have been successful in the recent past which shows audiences' liking for these type of non commercial movies.'
Deshmukh even promised the organisers of the festival - The Asian Film Foundation and The Enlighten Society - of more financial help from the government.
The festival has two competition sections - the best debutant directors and the best fiction films - which will be judged by a panel comprising national and international filmmakers.
During the inaugural function, Korean director Park Kwang Su was honoured with the Asian Film Culture Award, while P.K. Nair, former director of National Film Archives, received the Satyajit Ray Memorial Award.
Chinese film 'Tuya's Marriage' directed by Wang Quan'an was screened as the opening film.