Filmmaker, archivist and Founder-Director of Film Heritage Foundation, Shivendra Singh Dungarpur, has been invited by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences to speak about Indian cinema tomorrow (July 14) in Los Angeles. Dungarpur will have the privilege of being a part of a panel comprising heads of major Hollywood studio archives such as Sony Pictures, Warner Bros and Paramount Pictures among others. Later, he will be giving a keynote speech on ‘India’s Film Heritage – Rich, Diverse, Endangered’. What’s more, his award-winning film Celluloid Man will also be screened there.
Dungarpur, naturally, is elated at the prospect of being a part of such a prestigious platform. “It’s an extraordinary feeling because you have grown up thinking that you will be at the Oscar Academy at some point in your life, but to be there for the entire day, giving a talk and to be in a panel with all the big names of the studios and showing your film, it’s truly an honour and nothing short of a remarkable dream,” he says. He adds that this invitation is proof that their efforts to preserve Indian heritage and cinema have been recognised.
On his multiple-award-winning documentary, Celluloid Man, being screened there, Dungarpur says, “It’s been six years and we continue to have screenings of the film. I told the Academy that the documentary is available on DVD and on Netflix but they wanted to show it on 35 mm, to know more about Indian heritage and cinema.”
The documentary explores and celebrates the life and works of Indian archivist PK Nair, has been screened at over 50 film festivals and has won two National Awards at the 60th National Film Awards, including Best Biographical Film and Best Editing for Irene Dhar Malik. “PK Nair’s dream was to go to the Academy and I feel he will be there because of this film. He will be deeply missed,” says Dungarpur.