Dhaka: The 21st edition of Bangladesh's largest film festival- Dhaka International Film Festival (DIFF) will be inaugurated on Saturday,  Foreign Minister Dr. A K Abdul Momen will be the Chief Guest on the occasion. Announcing this at a press conference on Thursday, 

Festival Director Ahmed Muztaba Zamal said that 255 films from 71 countries will be screened during the 8-day long festival. It will include 129 full length feature films and 123 Independent and short films. All the shows will be free for the viewers at multiple venues in Dhaka. 

The festival will have 9 segments including a competitive segment under the Asian Cinema section with the best film being awarded Taka 1 lakh, a crest and certificate by the eminent jury. Under the retrospective section, the DIFF will showcase 4 films by the renowned French new-wave filmmaker Fracois Truffaut. The Bangladesh panorama will feature 9 full length films from the country.

It will also have sections like cinema of the world, spiritual films, Children’s film, Women filmmakers and short and experimental films.

A total of 36 films from India will be screened during the festival under various

segments. Aprajito directed by Anik Dutta, I am not the River Jhelum, directed by Prabhash Chandra and Hawk's Muffin directed by Krishnendu Kalesh will be screened under the Asian Films Competition segment of the festival.

The DIFF will also organise  the ninth International Women Filmmakers Conference between 15-16 January. A seminar cum workshop on ‘East meets West’ will also be held between 15-18 January during the DIFF. The ‘Wide Angle’ programme will provide insights into the art and technique of film making to those interested in films. 

Drawing attention to the gradual decline and disappearance of Jatra and Circus in Bangladesh,  Festival Director Ahmed Muztaba Zamal highlighted the growing difficulty in putting together such a festival in the country with paucity of resources and declining number of sponsors. He called upon the government and other public bodies to provide a permanent venue for the film festival and extend more robust support for organising these events. 

The festival is organised by the Rainbow Film Society of Bangladesh. ‘Better Film, Better Audience, Better Society’ is its motto. 

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