IFFM guests Cricketer Kapil Dev and Abhishek Bachchan to hoist the Indian flag at the Federation Square, Melbourne on August 13

In the 75th year of India’s independence, the festival is proudly presented by the Victorian Government via VicScreen the principal partner of the festival. The IFFM Flag Hoisting Ceremony remains one of the pivotal events of the festival with thousands of people descending upon Federation Square to see their favourite stars hoist the Indian flag. This year the flag will be proudly raised by legendary Indian cricketer, Kapil Dev, who has been immortalised in Kabir Khan’s iconic film, 83. In other exciting news the festival
is delighted to announce that Bollywood royalty, Abhishek Bachchan will be part of an already stellar line up of esteemed guests and join cricketer, Kapil Dev in raising India’s flag at Federation Square on Saturday 13th August.

Celebrating its thirteenth anniversary this year, the Indian Film Festival of Melbourne (IFFM) is thrilled to announce the 2022 IFFM Award Nominations, to be celebrated at their glamorous red-carpet gala event at the Palais Theatre on Sunday 14th August. The IFFM awards highlight the best of Indian cinema and will feature a night of music and entertainment paying tribute to IFFM’s honoured international guests and nominees. Some of the confirmed guests for this year’s festival include Bollywood superstars Samantha Prabhu, Tamannaah Bhatia, Vaani Kapoor, Shefali Shah and renowned Indian director Kabir Khan. The star-studded event will be hosted by the charming Rithvik Dhanjani, and include performances from much loved local entertainment acts including 13 year old THE VOICE contestant, Janaki Easwar and Punjabi Australian singer, Parvyn.

After a two-year in person hiatus, the Indian Film Festival of Melbourne (IFFM) is delighted to announce its triumphant return to in-person screenings this year, with ‘Revival’ as the chosen theme for 2022. The last two years have seen IFFM shift to online with its 2021 festival garnering over 147,000 views. This year IFFM’s 13th edition is set to take place from the 12th – 20th August, as a hybrid festival incorporating in-person screenings, much-loved IFFM events, and an online program – which can be accessed via the IFFM app, ensuring film lovers everywhere can enjoy the hottest cinema offerings from both India and the Indian subcontinent.

In the 75th year of India’s independence, the festival is proudly presented by the Victorian Government via VicScreen, which is a principal partner of the festival and further cements Melbourne as a destination which celebrates India and the Indian subcontinent. The festival remains one of the most popular Indian Film Festivals outside of India and continues to celebrate diversity through cinema.

This year’s program will include more than 100 feature films, documentaries, and shorts, with some of the early highlights including:

  • Award-winning feature film, The Rapist, which was recently awarded the prestigious Kim Jiweok Award at the Busan International Film Festival. The film’s Director, Aparna Sen and her daughter, actress Konkona Sen Sharma will be amongst the festival’s well regarded cinematic guests this year.
  • The festival’s centrepiece event, the star studded IFFM Awards will return this year and will now include new awards such as Best Film from the Subcontinent and in an exciting addition, the awards will now include streaming services, with a new award for Best Streaming Series.
  • As a result of the festival’s growing popularity, IFFM has also announced a brand-new exciting chapter for the festival, the IFFM Summer Chapter, which take place in Melbourne in January 2023.

IFFM Festival Director, Mitu Bhowmick Lange said, “We are absolutely delighted to have IFFM come back physically this year alongside an exciting virtual programming. To have with us a legendary cricketer, Mr. Kapil Dev in honour of a film based on his iconic 1983 World Cup Win, we are excited to have him in Melbourne. Being a city of cinema and cricket lovers alike, we are certain the audiences will be excited to see him here. The festival this year has over 100 films from across the India sub-continent and we are excited to celebrate Indian cinema in all its glory and diversity”.

Kapil Dev said, I look forward to being part of IFFM 2022. It’s a great platform celebrating the best in Indian cinema. I truly do believe that sports and cinema are two major cultural experiences for not only Indians but various communities and countries ,that bind us together. It’s something for decades now that has united people. It’s a deep rooted emotional connect and love we have for  both cinema and sports, and when they come together it’s a rewarding experience for everyone.”

As ever, IFFM will continue to showcase the best of cinema from this enormous industry that encompasses not only Bollywood, but a mosaic of different regions, tastes, and cultures. The festival will also continue to provide a platform to upcoming film makers through its Short Film Competition, as well as bring all the glamour and excitement of Indian cinema’s most talked about talent to Melbourne at its red-carpet event, the IFFM Awards night. Established in 2010, the festival consistently strives to program films which provide a robust forum for conversation and that enhance not only India’s rich storytelling tradition, but also looks to challenge people’s notions of this country which has emerged in recent years as the fastest-growing major economy in the world.

Minister for Creative Industries, Steve Dimopoulos said: “From its diverse program of film and joyous celebration of culture to the star power it attracts, the Indian Film Festival of Melbourne is an unmissable event. The Victorian Government is a proud, longstanding supporter of IFFM, this year boosting our support for the festival to extend its reach and impact, and we look forward to seeing Victorians from all communities join the celebration.”  

Throughout August, IFFM will take over multiple key venues in Melbourne’s CBD and suburbs including Federation Square, Arts Centre Melbourne, and the Palais Theatre. This year IFFM has chosen the Royal Children’s Hospital as its charity partner, and IFFM online viewers will be encouraged to donate to support this essential hospital service.

Key Dates Announced:

Friday 12th August:

  • IFFM Press Conference, 55 Collins Street, Melbourne
  • IFFM Opening Night @ Hoyts District Docklands

Saturday 13th August :

  • Flag Hoisting Ceremony for the 75th Anniversary Indian Independence @ Federation Square, Melbourne
  • Bollywood Dance Competition @ Federation Square, Melbourne
  • IFFM Talks @ Arts Centre, Melbourne

Sunday 14th August:

  • IFFM Awards Night @ Palais Theatre, St Kilda

Saturday 20th August:

  • IFFM Closing Night @ Hoyts District Docklands

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