Spirit of Fire Debuts with International Flair

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The inaugural Spirit of Fire film festival brought together filmmakers and industry figures from 18 countries, including India, Iran, China, South Africa, and Brazil. TV BRICS served as the festival’s international media partner.

This year’s competition program showcased over 40 films by emerging directors from Russia, Europe, Asia, and the Middle East. The theme, “The Special Language of National Cinematography,” highlighted the unique storytelling power of different cultures.

Natalia Komarova, Governor of Khanty-Mansiysk Autonomous Okrug – Yugra, emphasized the festival’s role in fostering international film industry cooperation. She pointed to last year’s participation by India, which resulted in a joint Russian-Indian project, and highlighted Iran’s participation this year, with the Iranian ambassador underlining the country’s commitment to the event.

The Spirit of Fire festival kicked off with awards for the open microfilm competition, themed “Family Values.” The special prize went to “Like Father and Son” by Chinese director Bai Zhiqiang. The “Your Cinema” program winner was “Tegar” by Indonesian director Anggi Frisky.

Professor Li Ge, Secretary General of the Franco-Chinese Association of New Cinema and professor at the Academy of International Studies in New Delhi, noted Spirit of Fire festival’s contribution to cultural and cinematic collaboration within the BRICS countries. He expressed hope for increased exchange and cooperation between BRICS film festivals in the future.

The Indian film “Abduction” by Karan Tejpal received a special jury mention. During a plenary session, Mrs. Srishti, Second Secretary of the Embassy of India, discussed potential avenues for Russia-India film cooperation. She praised the festival’s welcoming environment for young talent and emphasized the value of each nation’s unique cinematic traditions in fostering the development of ethnic cinema.

The “Bronze Taiga” international competition prize for a debut film was awarded to Daniel Bandeira’s “Property” (Brazil).

Held annually with government support and under the personal patronage of Governor Komarova, the Spirit of Fire is Russia’s premier international platform for showcasing debut films by emerging directors. Notably, the festival is included in the program for Russia’s 2024 BRICS presidency.

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