Renowned Manipuri filmmaker Aribam Syam Sharma's classic film, "Ishanou," is set to make its premiere at the Cannes Film Festival, officials of the Manipur State Film Development Society (MSFDS) announced.
The film, which was recognized as a World Classic, will be screened in the Cannes Classic section. The restored version of the film, produced in 1990, is the first film to be restored and only the second Manipuri feature film to be digitized.
The 91-minute film, which was previously an official entry to the Un Certain Regard section of Cannes in 1991, stars Anoubam Kiranmala and Kangjam Tomba and deals with the Maibi culture of Manipur. The MSFDS, in association with the Film Heritage Foundation, Mumbai, and director Aribam Syam Sharma, initiated the ambitious restoration project of 'Ishanou'.
According to the Chairman of Film Forum Manipur (FFM), Laimayum Surjakanta Sharma, Syam Sharma is the doyen of Manipuri cinema who has been working relentlessly to portray the cultural and emotional nuances of the state and its people through cinematic storytelling with utmost simplicity and distinctive artistic signature.
Various film-related organizations in Manipur had urged the Information and Broadcasting Ministry last year to confer Dadasaheb Phalke Award upon Syam Sharma. In November last year, Manipuri films were screened under the special Manipuri cinema section titled "Golden Jubilee of Manipuri Cinema" at the 53rd edition of the International Film Festival of India (IFFI) held in Goa.