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We are pleased to announce the launch of FD-zone London – a collaboration between the Films Division, Government of India, and the Centre for Research and Education in Arts and Media (CREAM) at the University of Westminster.

Established in 1948, Films Division India is one of the largest documentary, experimental and short film-producing units in the world. It has an archive of more than 8000 titles, which chronicle the story of independent India through diverse narratives. FD-zone London will bring this archive into conversation with contemporary independent films through a programme of regular screenings and discussions curated by film scholars.  

FD-zone London will launch with a screening of Rangbhoomi by acclaimed Indian experimental filmmaker Kamal Swaroop. The film will be introduced by Shai Heredia (Srishti School of Art), filmmaker, curator and founder of India’s Experimenta film festival, who is currently a visiting research fellow at University of Westminster. Audience discussion will follow the screening, after a round-table debate between Shai Heredia, Dr Stephen Hughes (SOAS), Dr Ranita Chatterjee (Westminster) and Prof Rosie Thomas (Westminster).

Rangbhoomi (dir. Kamal Swaroop, 2013, 80 mins) follows the filmmaker as he attempts to trace the contours of Dada Saheb Phalke’s life in Varanasi, where Phalke, India’s legendary film pioneer, withdrew - disillusioned - from the world of cinema and decided to take up theatre. During his two years in Varanasi (1920-22) Phalke wrote a semi-autobiographical play titled Rangbhoomi which forms the core of this cinematic exploration. Set in the visually thrilling landscapes of the old town of Varanasi, the film intertwines the personal engagement of Kamal Swaroop with the story of Phalke’s journey and the play, deploying a vibrant palette of sounds, sights and characters in a surrealist juxtaposition. 

The evening begins with drinks at 5.45pm for a 6pm start. The event is free and all are welcome but registration is essential.

Please reserve your place by registering online.

Please address any queries to Fathima Nizaruddin: [email protected]