MIFF 2018 to screen over 430 films

MIFF 2018

The much awaited documentary film festival in India, the Mumbai International Film Festival for Documentary, Short and Animation Films or MIFF as it is known popularly, will see a grand inaugural on 28 January, 2018 at  NCPA Mumbai.   The week long festival will showcase nearly 430 documentary, short and animation films from over 40 countries. The oldest and the largest film festival for non-feature films in South Asia, which began in 1990 is being organized by the Films Division, Ministry of Information & Broadcasting, Government of India.

The response to the 15th edition of MIFF has been overwhelming, signifying a vibrant documentary culture in India and the world.  The festival directorate received a record 790 entries, with 194 entries from 32 countries in the International competition and 596 entries in the National competition.

Selection of films for National and International Competition was made by independent Selection Committees. In view of large number of entries for the national competition, a two-tier selection process was followed.  The Chairpersons of the Regional Selection Committees (Mumbai I&II,  Delhi,  Kolkata & Bangalore) met in Mumbai and evaluated the short listed films before recommending 43 films for the National Competition.  International Selection Committee met in Mumbai and evaluated the films before recommending  25 films for the MIFF 2018  International Competition.


Golden Conch Award cash prize doubled

Giving a major boost to the documentary movement, the Ministry of Information & Broadcasting has approved doubling of prize money for the Golden Conch Award winning Best Documentary Film in the International Competition to Rs 1 million (Rs 10 lakhs) from the earlier Rs 500,000 (Rs 5 lakhs).

Golden Conch, Silver Conch and trophies with handsome cash awards are part of the competition in categories like Best Documentary, Best Short Fiction and Best Animation film.  Besides, technical awards will be given for Best Cinematography, Editing and Sound Design.  Other highlights are the Pramod Pati Special Jury award, Best Student Film and Best Debut film award all of which carry trophy and cash awards.  Indian Documentary Producers’ Association (IDPA) and the Government of Maharashtra, through Dadasaheb Phalke Chitranagari join hands with Films Division in instituting awards.


Films packages

Besides the contemporary films vying for top honours in the International and National Competition,  MIFF will showcase best documentary short and animation films produced in India and abroad under special packages including Jury retrospectives and Best of Fests.

The Animation Package includes films of Ivan Maximov of Russia, Baret Ilk of Turkey and Lea Zagury of Brazil.  A special package of French Shorts and Experimental films curated by Gabriele Brennen of the 3iS International Institute for Image and Sound, Paris will be screened on 29th.  The Best of the Fests package includes films sourced from top documentary film festivals like Berlinale, HotDocs, Canada,  Melbourne Documentary Festival and Guanajuato Film Festival, Mexico.  A retrospective of veteran Iranian film maker – Rakshan Benietemad, will include 3 documentaries from 3 decades.  Other retrospectives will cover works of French film maker Dominic Dubosc, Mudhushree Dutta and noted animator Bhimsain Khurana.  There are also special film packages from the North East and Jammu & Kashmir.

To add flavour and substance to the festival, workshops, master classes, lecture-demonstrations and panel discussions on topics of interest will take place during MIFF 2018. Nandan Saxena will be conducting a 4 day workshop on ‘Non-fiction cinematography’

Another important feature of MIFF 2018 is students’ participation. Student films of FTII, Satyajit Ray Film & TV Institute, Whistling Woods, MGR Film & TV Institute, Prayasam, State University of Rohtak, National Institute of Design will be screened during the festival.


The Opening Film

‘I Am Not Your Negro’, the 2017 Oscar nominated documentary on American Civil Rights Movement, that has won top awards in Toronto, Chicago, Los Angeles, Philadelphia and 8 other international festivals, will be the opening film of MIFF 2018.  The 93 minute documentary written by James Baldwin and directed by Raoul Peck connects the past of the Civil Rights movement to the present.


V Shantaram Lifetime Achievement Award

The coveted V Shantaram lifetime Achievement Award for promotion of documentary movement in India will be conferred upon an eminent documentary film maker chosen by an independent jury. The Award money for the Lifetime Achievement award has also been doubled from Rs 500,000 (Rs 5 lakhs) to Rs 1 million (Rs 10 lakhs).  All together cash awards of Rs 5.8 million (Rs 58 lakhs) will be given away during MIFF 2018.

While feature films generally address the entertainment needs of people, documentaries fill up the information needs of people.  In a bid to make MIFF a people’s festival, the delegate fee has been kept at a modest Rs 300 while there will be no fee for film studies and mass communication student delegates.

The screenings will be held in the theatres in Films Division complex, 24-Pedder Road, Mumbai and nearby Russian Culture Centre from January 29, 2017. Come to Mumbai and celebrate the documentary movement.  For media /delegate registrations, please visit the MIFF website.



Special Packages Curator 
Special package of SAARC docs & shorts (30 films) Reena Mohan
Homage to Murray Lerner, USA  (3 films) Premraj (Films Division)
Brazilian Animation Films special package  (29 films) Dhvani Desai
Turkish Animation special package  (23 films) Berat Ilk | Dhvani Desai
Documentaries by women filmmakers of The Philippines (6 documentaries) Reena Mohan
French Shorts & Experimental Films  (22 films) Gabriele Brennen
Special package of Cuban Films  (14 films)

(directed by veteran documentary maker Santiago Alvarez)

P N Ramachandra



Dominique Dubosc,  veteran film maker from France

Elisa Paloschi, award winning documentary film maker from Canada.

Berat Ilk, animation film maker and academic from Turkey

Baby Ruth Villarama, leading documentary film maker of South East Asian Region

Pierre Assouline, writer, author and an Indo-phile from France. (producer of Vanaprastham (1999)


Haobam Paban Kumar, National Film Award winning film maker from Manipur

P Sukumaran Nair, writer, director and film maker in Malayalam, Trivandrum

Arun Chaddha,  Award winning documentary film maker, Delhi NCR

Maithili Rao, veteran film critic and columnist, Mysore

Ashish Kulkarni, FICCI Entertainment Division (Animation),  Mumbai


MIFF-2018 – List of Awards


Best Documentary Film

(Top Award of the Festival | Any duration)

Golden Conch + Rs.10,00,000
Best Short Fiction Film (up to 45 minutes) Silver Conch    + Rs.5,00,000
Best Animation Film Silver Conch    + Rs.5,00,000
Pramod Pati Special Jury Award (1) Trophy           +  Rs 1,00,000



Best Documentary Film (above 60 minutes) (2) Silver Conch + Rs.5,00,000
Best Documentary film (below 60 minutes)  (2) Silver conch + Rs.5,00,000
Best Short Fiction (upto 45 minutes) Silver conch + Rs.3,00,000
Best Animation Film Silver conch + Rs.3,00,000
Dadasaheb Phalke Chitranagari Award for Best Debut Film of a Director (Govt of Maharashtra) Trophy + Rs.1,00,000
Films Division – IDPA Vijaya Mulay Tropy for the  Best Student Film Trophy + Rs.1,00,000

* Prize money of Golden Conch and Silver Conch awards to be shared equally between Director and Producer wherever applicable 


TECHNICAL AWARDS (Common to International/National Categories)

Best Cinematography Rs.3,00,000
Best Editing Rs.3,00,000
Best Sound Design Rs.3,00,000



for Contribution to Documentary Movement in India  (to be given at the Inaugural function)

Lifetime Achievement Award Trophy, Shawl, Citation + Rs.10,00,000


Festival Circuit

Piyush Chauhan is an apple farmer from Simla with an immense interest in films of all sorts, especially, Hindi. He has reviewed Hollywood films in the past for a semi-trade film magazine. And is a certified mountaineer. In his spare time, which isn’t much these days, he imagines climbing the impossible mountains. He dreams of, someday, touching the peak of Everest on his own as well as of introducing himself to popular Indian cinema as an actor-producer.

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