The Jio MAMI Mumbai Film Festival 2023 commenced with a star-studded opening ceremony that brought together eminent figures from the world of cinema, featuring luminaries such as Kamal Haasan, Mani Ratnam, and Priyanka Chopra Jonas. This 10-day film extravaganza marked its triumphant return to an on-ground edition after a hiatus of three years. The festival’s inauguration took place at the Nita Mukesh Ambani Cultural Centre (NMACC), with the presence of renowned filmmakers like Karan Johar, Hansal Mehta, Vishal Bhardwaj and his wife Rekha Bhardwaj, Zoya Akhtar, and producer Ektaa R Kapoor.
In addition to these notable directors and producers, the event saw a remarkable turnout of celebrated actors, including Kareena Kapoor Khan, Saif Ali Khan, Rajkumar Rao accompanied by his wife Patralekha, Bhumi Pednekar, Sonam Kapoor, Karisma Kapoor, Babil Khan, Arjun Rampal, and many others who graced the festival with their presence.
Priyanka Chopra Jonas, the current chairperson of the film festival, radiated enthusiasm as she welcomed everyone, saying, “Welcome to Jio MAMI Film Festival, where cinema is not just an art form but a way of life.”
The festival opened with the screening of “The Buckingham Murders,” directed by Hansal Mehta and starring Kareena Kapoor, setting the stage for an exciting cinematic journey.
During the opening ceremony, the prestigious Excellence in Cinema Award was presented to esteemed directors Mani Ratnam and Luca Guadagnino for their exceptional and enduring contributions to the world of cinema. Kamal Haasan and Priyanka Chopra Jonas had the honor of presenting these awards to these cinematic legends.
Bhumi Pednekar, the brand ambassador for Dimensions Mumbai, a short film competition focusing on the theme of Mumbai City for filmmakers across India, presented awards to the winners, alongside the jury members Shahana Goswani, Anvitaa Dutt, and Shriya Pilgaonkar. “Nightingales in the Cocoon” by Praveen Giri received the Dimensions Mumbai Gold award, while “Halfway” by Kumar Chheda secured the Dimensions Mumbai Silver award.
Sonam Kapoor, serving as the brand ambassador for the popular options market – Word To Screen, had the honor of presenting the Book on Cinema award to “Mahatma on Celluloid: A Cinematic Biography” by Prakash Magdum.
The festival also celebrated the outstanding careers of Aruna Vasudev, Nasreen Munni Kabir, and Uma da Cunha, who received the Lifetime Achievement Awards, presented to them by Marco Muller, Karan Johar, and Adoor Gopalakrishnan, respectively.
The Royal Stag Barrel Select Large Short Films awards were presented by actor Sobhita Dhulipala and filmmaker Vidhu Vinod Chopra. “Summer of Soul” by Sanjib Gogoi was awarded the Best Film, and James Elia of “Vakuppu” (The Clause) earned the Best Actor trophy.
The festival’s lineup for 2023 promises an array of captivating films, with a special focus on contemporary works and emerging cinematic voices from South Asia. The organizers have curated a program featuring over 250 films, including more than 40 world premieres, 45 Asia premieres, 70 South Asia premieres, and 13 distinct sections.
Notable titles in this year’s festival lineup include Hirokazu Kore-eda’s “Monster,” Bradley Cooper’s Oscar-contender “Maestro,” Anurag Kashyap’s “Kennedy,” and Justine Triet’s Palme d’Or-winning film “Anatomy of a Fall.”
The Jio MAMI Mumbai Film Festival promises to be a cinematic extravaganza, offering a diverse array of films and an unforgettable experience for all attendees. The festival will culminate on November 5, leaving cinephiles eagerly anticipating what’s in store for the remainder of this spectacular event.