3rd Annual NYC SAFF Announces Finely-Curated Lineup for In-Person Festival October 22 to 24

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Hello Friends of NYC SAFF,

It’s been a while…glad you are still with us!

Presented by Toyota North America for the second time, the 3rd annual New York City South Asian Film Festival (NYC SAFF), produced by New York, Texas and India-based media conglomerate, JINGO Ventures, will showcase an incredible lineup of 22 finely-curated shorts, documentaries and feature films at the Helen Mills Event Space and Theater in Chelsea from Oct. 22 to 24, 2021.

The opening, centerpiece and closing nights films at NYC SAFF are Ajitesh Sharma’s documentary WOMB (Women Of My Billion), Gaurav Madan’s drama BARAH BY BARAH and Geeta Malik’s comedy INDIA SWEET AND SPICES, respectively.

WOMB is a heart-warming watch exploring the socio-political issues faced by women of today’s India. The documentary feature highlights the monumental journey through Srishti Bakshi’s lens, her interaction with over 85,000 women over more than 100 workshops she conducted in schools, villages and institutions on her walk from Kanyakumari to Kashmir.
Sooraj, the last remaining death photographer at the burning banks of Manikarnika, is going through troubled times like old Kashi. The ancient town is being demolished to build modern beautified pathways. The death photographer is out of work because of the fancy smartphones with exquisite cameras. He stands at the crossroads – either he continues seeking dummies to click or he looks for greener pastures beyond the singed banks of Varanasi to secure a better future for his family. Watch trailer HERE

Tribeca Film Festival darling, INDIA SWEETS AND SPICES, celebrates a young woman’s coming-of-age, set against a lovingly-framed glimpse of the life of an Indian-American family. Directed by Geeta Malik and starring Sophia Ali, Manisha Koirala, Adil Hussain, Rish Shah, Deepti Gupta and Ved Sapru.

This year, we are boasting FOUR world premieres, SEVEN North American premieres and ELEVEN NYC premieres! Some of the festival highlights include:

  • World premiere of Rajaram Rajendran’s sci-fi thriller RANI RANI RANI, starring independent cinema queen Tannishtha Chatterjee in the titular, TRIPLE roles. Watch trailer HERE.
  • The grande dame of Indian cinema, Farrukh Jaffar (of GULABO SITABO and PEEPLI LIVE fame), takes on Bollywood’s patriarchy in the North American Premiere of Sandeep Kumar’s MEHRUNISA. Watch trailer HERE.
  • One of Mindy Kaling’s favorite films of the year is Sujata Day’s Indo-American, model minority satire DEFINITION PLEASE, having its NYC premiere at our festival. Watch trailer HERE.
  • International festival premiere of Abhiroop Basu’s short film, LAALI,  starring Pankaj Tripathi as a lonely, Calcutta laundryman who finds solace in an unclaimed red dress left behind by a customer.
  • Faraz Arif Ansari’s lesbian short, SHEER QORMA, starring Shabana Azmi, Divya Dutta and Swara Bhaskar, as part of the festival’s LGBTQIA+ programming. Ansari & Dutta will be in attendance. Watch trailer HERE.

*For the complete festival lineup, schedule and ticketing, please visit www.nycsaff.com. Individual screenings are only $10, and a festival pass, which covers all 22 films and THREE after-parties (food & booze included), is only $150 this year.

**Virtual SAFF, powered by Movie Saints, will take place online from October 25 to 31 at www.virtualsaff.moviesaints.com. It will showcase all the films from the physical festival, plus 13 additional titles that will be accessible to viewers all over North America (so tell your friends around the country about your favorite picks from NYC SAFF).

***This year, MORE than ever, we need our well-wishers and ambassadors to roll up their sleeves to make sure we get butts in seats! The entertainment industry has been hit hard in the past 1.5 years, and if we are to make a comeback, we NEED all of your help. Please tell your friends, family & network about NYC SAFF and encourage them to attend with you!

#seeyouatourmovies #nycsaff #independentcinema #southasian #filmfestival

Before our film festival kicks off, we are excited to sponsor “Diwali on the Hudson,” the most fun-filled Diwali party of the year, taking place on Oct. 20th!

Celebrate the Festival of Lights and support the communities the Desai Foundation serves in rural India. Highlights include Grammy-nominated performer Falu Shah and the Resistance Revival Chorus. For more information and to buy tickets, go HERE

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