Almost 90 films will be screened at the LUMS International Film Festival FiLUMS 2013 that opened here on Friday.
More than 200 participants have registered before the official opening ceremony. The festival is expected to draw 400 to 500 visitors.
FiLUMS 2013 is the seventh edition of the festival organized by the LUMS Media Arts Society. Taimur Abdullah, convener of FiLUMS 2012 told The Express Tribune that the festival aims to provide a platform for upcoming film-makers.
“The festival can be viewed as a platform where young talent can showcase their work… even get acknowledgement,” said Abdullah, who is in his final year at LUMS and is an amateur film-maker.
Sixty local and 30 international films have been shortlisted for screening. With the Kara Film Festival not being organised, says Abdullah, FiLUMS has taken centre stage.
“Pakistan needs festivals where talent gets appreciated and new avenues explored”, he said.
Screening of movies will be followed by workshops. This year, two films will premiere at the festival, Seedlings – which received the Best Picture Award at the New York Film Awards last year and a local feature titled Fatima.
Awards are offered in four categories: animation, documentaries, short film and feature length film. Most entries received have been in the feature-length and short film categories, said Abdullah, who has been associated with FiLUMS for three years.
Some of the short listed entries have come from National College of Arts, Punjab University, Beaconhouse National University and the Shaheed Zulfikar Ali Bhutto Institute of Science and Technology.
Abdullah said a panel of core team members of the organising team shortlists the entries for screening during the festival. Following the screening, the jury gives out its verdict for the awards. The jury this year: Behroze Sabzwari, Saleem Sheikh, Bushra Ansari, Mikaal Zulfikaar, Juggan Kazim, Shehzad Rafique, Seemi Raheel, Bilal Lashari and Sania Saeed.
The shortlisted international entries are from Russia, Japan, Mexico and the United States. Osman Mazhar, media director FiLUMS said the films will be screened with subtitles.
Mazhar, who is in his sophomore year at LUMS, says besides the screening the festival also attracts participants because of its social events.
“These events get a lot of attention… participants also get a chance to interact with the celebrities”, he said. The social events include dinners, premiers and the award night. Amna Kardar, Mehreen Raheel, Meesha Shafi, Bilal Lashari, Seemi Raheel and Saba Qamar are among the celebrities attending this year’s festival.
Published in The Express Tribune, February 9th, 2013.