The 12th International Children’s Film Festival Bangladesh began on Saturday with the screening of two films at Shawkat Osman Memorial Auditorium of Central Public Library.
Organised by Children Film Society Bangladesh, the festival is featuring 179 films from 32 countries at four venues in Dhaka.
National professor Anisuzzaman inaugurated the festival where information minister Hasan Mahmud was present as the chief guest while noted filmmakers Syed Salahuddin Zaki and Morshedul Islam were present as guests.
The ceremony was presided over by Children’s Film Society Bangladesh president Dr Muhammad Zafar Iqbal.
The inauguration ceremony commenced with children rendering the Tagore song Alo amar alo aloy bhuban bhora.
The guests and organisers hoisted the national flag and festival flag with children singing the national anthem.
Following which, a discussion was held at the auditorium. CFSB general secretary Munira Morshed Munni gave the welcome speech at the programme.
‘Besides film screening, the festival will feature workshops, seminars, award giving ceremony and others,’ said festival director Abir Ferdous.
The festival will feature films in four sections.
The sections are ‘Films made by Bangladeshi Children’, ‘Young Talent Award’, ‘Social Film Award’ and ‘International Competition’.
Besides these four sections, films will be screened under two other categories- ‘Flashback’ and ‘Bangladesh Panorama’.
‘We have been organising the festival every year since 2008. Children are working closely with us. They were involved with designing posters, leaflets, film selection process and others. I thank the government for supporting the festival,’ said eminent filmmaker Morshedul Islam, who is also the founder of CFSB.
The films will be screened every day at 11:00 am, 2:00 pm, 4:00 pm and 6:00pm at Shawkat Osman Memorial Auditorium of Central Public Library, Sufia Kamal Auditorium of Bangladesh National Museum, National Art Gallery Auditorium of Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy and British Council Auditorium in Fuller Road. The screenings are free for all.
‘Film is a powerful medium of communication. The festival gives children a platform to showcase their talent,’ said national professor Anisuzzaman.
‘Films not only entertain us but also educate us by giving a glimpse into reality, contemporary issues, struggles of the marginalised people in society and others. I thank the organisers for arranging such a festival,’ said information minister Hasan Mahmud, who also urged the parents to discourage the use of smart phones among children under 16 years old.
‘Now-a-days the younger generation rarely takes interest in anything but the screens of their smart phones. They do not interact much with others around them. As a result they are growing up as individuals with poor social skills,’ he added.
Two films namely 5 Rupees, directed by Indian filmmaker Piyush Chandrakant Panjuani, and an animation Captain Kathal in Baper Rasta the Wrong Road made by Mighty Punch Studios were screened.
Children Film Society Bangladesh has been organising the festival since 2008. It is one of the biggest film festivals in Bangladesh and also the only international film festival dedicated to children. This year’s festival will end on March 8.
Want stories like this in your inbox?
Sign up to exclusive daily email
More Stories from Film