The ninth edition of Film Southasia 2013 concluded on Sunday evening in Kathmandu with the festival’s award ceremony.
Algorithms by Ian McDonald, a film about young blind chess players in India, won the festival’s Ram Bahadur Trophy for Best Film. The QFX Jury Awards went to Invoking Justice by Deepa Dhanraj and Are you Listening! by Kamar Ahmed Simon.
No. 62 Pansodan Street by Cho Phyone won the Tareque Masud Award for Best Debut film. The festival introduced a new award this year titled the UNICEF Nepal Award which was given to Char… No Man’s Island by Sourav Sarangi. No Fire Zone by Callum Macrae received a Special Jury Mention.
The festival showcased a total of 55 documentary and non-fiction films from around Southasia and the Diaspora on diverse issues. Out of the 382 submissions that were received, 34 were selected to be in competition.
The festival began on Thursday and was immediately faced with a controversy. Three Sri Lankan films selected for the festival were directed to be pulled out by the Ministry of Information and Communication, under pressure from the Sri Lankan government. The festival went on to screen the three films at an independent venue.
FSA 2013 Jury was chaired by acclaimed art critic and journalist Sadanand Menon from Chennai, who was accompanied by veteran photographer, writer, curator and activist Shahidul Alam from Dhaka and film maker, producer and currently Public Media Director at the Center for Asian American Media (CAAM) Sapana Sakya of Kathmandu.