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A Manipuri Film Is Premiering At Indian Film Festival of Melbroune

A Manipuri Film Is Premiering At Indian Film Festival of Melbroune

Independent Indian cinema is a vastly talented industry even if equally under appreciated in its own country. But this year many will have to look past their Bollywood blinders for an independent Indian film; ‘Lembi Leima’ has just made it to the 2023 prestigious Indian Film Festival Of Melbroune; one of the most coveted and competitive film festivals in the world. The film will have its world premeire on 15th March 2023 and get screend at the IFFM Streaming Platform.The film is selected under the festival’s Beyond Bollywood competition. The film talks about the two sides of a story, a woman presumed as a bad omen for a village and after a night, goddess for the other. It also tells a tale of human greed and perseverance with an ultimate fate. It is an intimate perspective on the idiosyncrasies that come with the misogyny that seeps into our everyday lives. Its selection to the IFFM is a landmark in Manipuri cinema at large because it is the first Maniprui fiction short to be an official selection and have world premeire at the IFFM. “It feels really surreal that the world is taking notice of a small indie film we made hustling in some state of Manipur. The pride of representing Manipur is immense, as is the responsibility,” says Bala Hijam Ningthoujam when asked about what it feels like for her work to be recognised at such a revered cinematic platform.

Speaking on the success of the film producer Bijou Thaangjam said “It was unreal to see the passion with which Mayank Pratap Singh – the writer and director of the film – approached every aspect of the film. The emotional stakes were high and the shooting conditions very difficult. It was also an absolute pleasure to see so many people coming together and helping with the film, only out of the faith they had in his vision.

The remarkable success of Lembi Leima is an inspiration for independent filmmakers across the nation to take a leap of faith in matters of their art. As for Singh his words of wisdom to young filmmakers is simple-“make films without waiting for someone to come and make them happen. The struggle is real and so should be your hustle.”