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Siraj Syed

Siraj Syed is the India Correspondent for and a member of FIPRESCI, the International Federation of Film Critics. He is a Film Festival Correspondent since 1976, Film-critic since 1969 and a Feature-writer since 1970. 



IFFI 50: Maker Madhur Bhandarkar’s Master Class on social perspective

IFFI 50: Maker Madhur Bhandarkar’s Master Class on social perspective

Thursday, 21st November, 2019, morning, saw many a film buff heading for the Masterclass on Master’s Social Perspective, held with  National Award winner and Padma Shri (civilian honour) Awardee Madhur Bhandarkar, and moderated by well know film trade analyst and critic, Taran Adarsh.

The session started with the felicitation of Madhur Bhandarkar and Taran Adarsh, by Satyendra Prakash, Director General, Bureau of Outreach Communication, Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, Union Government of India.

Known for films like Chandni Bar, Fashion, Page 3, Corporate, and Traffic Signal, among others, Madhur Bhandarkar said, “From being a (video) cassette seller to assisting director Ram Gopal Varma, it has been a great journey. A lot of people advised me to make a pot-boiler as my debut film, and I made Trishakti, with Sharad Kapoor, Arshad Warsi and Milind Gunaji, but it was unfortunate that when it released in 1999, it didn’t work, and that’s how Chandni Bar was born. I had several subjects in my mind before Trishakti, but no producers were ready to back them, as they felt my ideas were arty. I am thankful to R. Mohan, who trusted my vision for Chandni Bar.”

“I always thought that we have so many issues in the society that a woman character can portray well. It is my comfort zone. When I met Priyanka Chopra and told that I wanted to make a film (Fashion) with her, on the fashion world, she funnily told me that “…now you’ll target fashion world!” (Bhandarkar’s films are often seen as exposés of, or targetting, certain sections of society or social institutions, from his perspective).

Known for female oriented films, Bhandarkar added, “However, I have made Jail and Dil Toh Bachha Hai Ji both of which have male protagonists.”

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About Siraj Syed

Syed Siraj
(Siraj Associates)

Siraj Syed is a film-critic since 1970 and a Former President of the Freelance Film Journalists' Combine of India.

He is the India Correspondent of and a member of FIPRESCI, the international Federation of Film Critics, Munich, Germany

Siraj Syed has contributed over 1,015 articles on cinema, international film festivals, conventions, exhibitions, etc., most recently, at IFFI (Goa), MIFF (Mumbai), MFF/MAMI (Mumbai) and CommunicAsia (Singapore). He often edits film festival daily bulletins.

He is also an actor and a dubbing artiste. Further, he has been teaching media, acting and dubbing at over 30 institutes in India and Singapore, since 1984.

Bandra West, Mumbai


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