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Kolkata film festival will be a scaled down affair

The 27th Kolkata International Film Festival (KIFF) to be held from January 7 to 14 will be a scaled down affair with the authorities deciding to hold the usually grand inaugural function in the virtual mode due to the surge in COVID-19 cases.  West Bengal Minister of State for Culture Indranil Sen told a press meet on Tuesday that there will be 50 per cent occupancy at the 10 venues in the city where KIFF will be held. The ten venues are the three auditoria in the Nandan complex, Rabindra Sadan, Sisir Mancha, two auditoria of Nazrul Tirtha, Raindra Okakura Bhavan, Chalachitra Satabarsha Bhavan and Kolkata Information Centre Conference Hall where all COVID-19 protocols will be in place, he said.

The halls will not accommodate more than 50 per cent of their total capacity during any screening - either special screening or for the film loving audiences," he said. Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee will inaugurate the festival on the virtual mode from state secretariat on January 7 and Satyajit Ray classic 'Aranyer Din Ratri' will be screened as the inaugural film at Rabindra Sadan with 50 per cent capacity. Total 161 films, including 46 from 41 foreign countries, will be screened in 200 shows on the eight days of the film festival, Sen said. With Finland being the focus country of KIFF this time six works of contemporary Finnish cinema will be screened and one film from that country will vie for honour at the competition section. Of the 46 foreign films to be shown at KIFF this year, 23 are contemporary made between 2019 and 2021 from countries including Iran and Italy besides Finland, he said.

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