The 2018 Vancouver South Asian Film Festival wrapped up on Sunday night after 4 days of successful screenings and events. The festival kicked off with the North American premiere of the award-winning-film, Mehsampur and closed with two feature presentations; Nandita Das’ biopic Manto [Closing Day], and Sikh Musical Heritage; The Untold Story [Closing Gala]
In attendance at the festival were special guests Kabir Chowdhry (Director Mehsampur), Sapna Bhavnani (Creative Producer, Mehsampur), Danish Renzu (Director Half Widow), Jasbir Kaur Rababan (Producer, Sikh Musical Heritage; The Untold Story), Azadvir Singh, (Producer, Sikh Musical Heritage; The Untold Story)
VISAFF provides a platform to share and promote South Asian stories, culture, and perspectives that go unrepresented by mainstream cinema or Bollywood film. Which is why this year the festival was especially excited to host 40 plus films. The turnout reflected the festival’s aim of bridging gaps and it was able to do so by connecting with new communities through the introduction of new foreign language films in the festival lineup including Marathi, Bengali, and Kashmiri. The films were enjoyed
Beyond the films, VISAFF includes a whole host of workshops ranging in topics from acting, production, and casting. A highlight of the festival was the Outstanding Speakers Panel that featured film and television industry speakers who shared their experience and expertise and was followed by a Q&A.
“Ultimately, we can only do 10% of the work. The other 90% is all about audience engagement. Festivals, especially this one, are not possible without our patrons.” – VISAFF Producer, Mannu Sandhu
And the winners are:
Best Feature Film: Half-Widow | Best Documentary: Drawn Together | Best Short (North America): Bus Stop | Best Short (International): Maun | Audience Favourite: Sikh Musical Heritage
Youth Scholarships Presented by Vancouver Film School
- Anoush Merchant
- Lovejeet Brar
- Manjot Khaira
- N’we Jinan
The festival was made possible by the generous support of sponsors including; The City of Surrey, Simon Fraser University Surrey, Vancouver Film School, Nanak Foods, Air Canada, Creative BC, Telefilms Canada, Global AgriTrade, BCIBN (BC India Business Network), and many other community partners.