Ace filmmaker Mira Nair is the new Head of the Jury for the South Asia Competition at the Jio MAMI Mumbai Film Festival 2023. The announcement was made on October 10. Mira Nair’s directorial debut Salaam Bombay! earned an Oscar nomination in 1989. The film festival will commence on October 27 and will conclude by November 5. The South Asia competition of Jio MAMI Mumbai will screen films by “debut and second-time filmmakers from South Asia and the South Asian Diaspora Cinema.” 14 titles, which have been shortlisted for this new segment, were revealed on Monday, along with the entire Jio MAMI line-up. Mithya by Sumant Bhat, Barir Naam Shahana (A House Named Shahana) by Leesa Gazi, and The Red Suitcase by Fidel Devkota have also made it to the prestigious list.
Mira Nair is known for her groundbreaking films like Salaam Bombay! (Camera D’or, Cannes 1988), the pioneering Asian-African romance Mississippi Masala (1991), Golden Globe & Emmy-winning Hysterical Blindness (2001), and the international hit Monsoon Wedding (2001). Mira Nair became the first woman to win the Venice Film Festival’s prestigious Golden Lion for Monsoon Wedding.
Festival director at Jio MAMI Anupama Chopra welcomed “OG Disruptor” Mira Nair. She said: “We are thrilled to welcome Mira Nair as the head of the jury – South Asia Competition. Mira is the OG Disruptor. She has created an indelible mark on global cinema with her outstanding work.”
Artistic director at Jio MAMI Mumbai Film Festival Deepti D’Cunha said that they are “honored” to have one of the most celebrated filmmakers, the Golden Lion Winner, Mira Nair as the Head of the Jury.
Deepti D’Cunha added, “The South Asia competition is an integral part of our vision to serve as a hub for South Asian and South Asian Diaspora filmmakers and to provide emerging film talent with an opportunity to meet and collaborate with some of the best minds in global cinema. Mira Nair is one of our finest; there couldn’t be a better name than her to interact with and guide these young filmmakers.”
Mira Nair said that she is looking forward to “being inspired and excited by new voices in cinema.” According to the filmmaker, “nothing can be more encouraging than one’s peers and gurus of cinema putting the wind in our sails.”
Mira Nair said, “If we don’t tell our own stories, no one else will – this has been my mantra for a long time, which is why I’m honoured to preside over the MAMI jury for the South Asia competition this year. I look forward to being inspired and excited by new voices in cinema from close to home. It is so important that MAMI recognizes the best first or early films because nothing can be more encouraging than one’s peers and gurus of cinema putting the wind in our sails.”