'Sikandar' to compete at Stuttgart fest

Jun 16, 2009 IANS

New Delhi, June 16 (IANS) Two Indian movies - Hindi thriller "Sikandar" and Marathi drama "Samaantar" - have been nominated in two different categories at the Bollywood and Beyond Film Festival to be held in Stuttgart next month.

"Sikandar" has been selected as a part of the official competition and would bid for the German Star of India award, while "Samaantar" is competing in the Audience Award section at the fest that begins July 14.

Bollywood and Beyond is Germany's only Indian film festival and the annual event acts as a marketplace for building ties between Indian and German firms.

A suspense thriller, "Sikandar" has been written and directed by Piyush Jha and was recently screened at the International Film Festival of Los Angeles (IFFLA). It stars Parzaan Dastur and Ayesha Kapur along with R. Madhavan, Sanjay Suri and Arunoday Singh.

"Samaantar", directed by acclaimed actor-director Amol Palekar, is a heart-wrenching drama, starring Amol Palekar himself along with veteran actress Sharmila Tagore. The film is written by Sandhya Gokhale.

Both films have been produced by BIG Pictures.

"The selection of ?Sikandar' and ?Samaantar' reaffirms our strategy of taking Indian films global and are a strong shot in the arm for Big Pictures' efforts to walk away from the beaten track and produce world cinema titles in nine Indian languages," Mahesh Ramanathan, COO of BIG Pictures, said in a press statement.

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