LAHORE: From 50 to more than 600. That is the how much the annual LUMS International Film Festival (FiLums) 2011 has grown since last year.
Around 400 of those who registered for the three-day event, from February 11 – February 13) belong to Pakistan. Two hundred and two filmmakers belonging to 40 foreign countries including the United States, England, Ireland, Iran, India, Germany, Turkey, Romania, Serbia, Taiwan, Canada, Iraq, Spain, Poland, France and UAE have also registered online.
Muhammad Ali Shah, the proud extra curricular activities officer, said about the 80-member society. “Students who worked on their own to revive film have managed to become the largest student-organised film festival in Pakistan.”
FiLums convener, Rafiq Abdur Rehman, told The Express Tribune that teams and individuals from Lahore Grammar School, National College of Arts and Lahore School of Economics were among those who had the highest number of registered entries. “About 80 per cent of the registrations from Lahore are from schools,” said Rehman.
Sundus Naim Siddiqi, FiLums society president, was excited about the high number of registrations from foreign countries, “Last year we did not have any foreign entries by individuals.
The ones that we had had been sent by the French embassy!”
Rehman attributed the mammoth increase in registration to “no registration fee and not asking for copyrights”. “If somebody doesn’t want us to use their work for publicity we don’t,” he said.
According to the organisers, a lot of Indian and Iranian film makers have expressed an interest in attending the event in person. They said that they would do all they can to help those interested in obtaining visas.
With security a huge concern Hassan Iftikhar, FiLums general secretary, said that the society would arrange for 600 smart cards for participants and guests for the event.
In order to make the process of registration and submission easier, FiLums is using withoutabox, an online submission system, used by major film festivals and recognised by the Internet Movie Data Base.
There are four film categories for FiLums 2011. These include short films (2-15 minutes), animation (2-15 minutes), documentary (5-40 minutes) and feature length (30-60 minutes).
On the first day, FiLUMS is planning to screen the premiere of a Persian film Heal by Mian Adnan Ahmed.
Films will be judged for their theme, content, creativity, script, cinematography and editing.
The entries will be judged by a panel of judges comprising directors, actors and some members of the FiLums. Adeel Hashmi (a documentary maker), Sharmeen Obaid Chinoy (Emmy award winning filmmaker), Samar Minallah (filmmaker), Mian Adnan Ahmad (filmmaker), Hammad Khan (director), Syed Noor (director, producer) and Moammar Rana (actor) will be judging the young talent at FiLums. So keep your fingers crossed!
Published in The Express Tribune, January 16th, 2011.