Fifth edition of Film Preservation & Restoration Workshop India inaugurated in Hyderabad

MUMBAI: The fifth edition of the Film Preservation & Restoration Workshop India (FPRWI) 2019 was inaugurated Sunday at Hyderabad’s State Gallery of Art. Supported by Viacom18, this initiative of the Film Heritage Foundation (FHF) and International Federation of Film Archives (FIAF) in collaboration with Annapurna Studios is being held from 8th to 15th December 2019 in Hyderabad.

The workshop had Shyam Benegal and Chiranjeevi Konidela as the Guests of Honour. The ceremony was held in the presence of celebrated luminaries including Akkineni Nagarjuna, Amala Akkineni, S.S. Rajamouli, Suresh Babu, Jamuna J, Allu Arvind, Shobu Yarlagadda, Raghavendra Rao, T. Subbarami Reddy, Ramesh Prasad, and Jayesh Ranjan, Principal Secretary, IT & Industries and Commerce, Govt. of Telangana.

Shivendra Singh Dungarpur, Founder & Director of Film Heritage Foundation, spoke about the foundation’s preservation, education and outreach initiatives devoted to save the moving image heritage in India and the subcontinent. Also present at the opening were David Walsh, Training and Outreach Coordinator, FIAF and eminent members of the international faculty.

Dr. Nora Kennedy, Sherman Fairchild Conservator in Charge of the Department of Photograph Conservation, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York was conferred with the Film Heritage Foundation Outstanding Achievement Award and Dr. Ray Edmondson, founder of the National Film and Sound Archive of Australia was given the Lifetime Achievement Award during the ceremony.

Commenting on bringing the workshop to Hyderabad this year, Film Heritage Foundation Founder & Director Shivendra Singh Dungarpur said, “Over the last four years, we’ve been the Pied Pipers of film heritage drawing over 200 conservators, librarians, film scholars, academics, cinematographers, editors, colourists and technicians into our fold, eager to learn to save remarkable film patrimonies from our part of the world and showcase the richness and diversity of a heritage that has been lying dormant and forgotten for decades. And this number will cross the 270 mark this year. We are now ready to consolidate and build the country’s first world-class Centre of the Moving Image, an institution devoted to the art of film and we hope that we can count on the support of the film industry, the government and the public to make our vision a reality.”

Speaking on the association with this initiative, Viacom18 Group CEO and MD Sudhanshu Vats said, “India is a country of storytellers and the oldest stories in the world originate from here. Over the years, our cinema has portrayed the culture and heritage of India. At Viacom18, we realise the importance of preserving these stories that form a part of the Indian culture for the benefit of our future generations. As India’s foremost storytellers, we connect deeply with this ethos and our support to Film Heritage Foundation is a conflux of this shared sentiment. The Film Preservation & Restoration Workshop is a step in that direction and we at Viacom18 are proud to be associated with this initiative.”

The week-long intensive program certified by FIAF, will train a total of 80 students from India, Nepal, Bhutan, Bangladesh Sri Lanka and Afghanistan. Participants will be trained in processes to preserve, archive and restore both celluloid and digital films and film-related paper and photographic materials. Global experts like Dr. Ray Edmondson – legendary film archivist and founder of the National Film and Sound Archive of Australia, Robert Byrne – President of the San Francisco Silent Film Festival, Dr. Adelheid Heftberger – Head of Film Access, Bundesarchiv, German Federal Archive, Dawn Jaros – Head of Library Conservation, Margaret Herrick Library, Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Science, Marianna de Sanctis, Head of Film Repair, L’Immagine Ritrovata among others, will be a part of the esteemed faculty of the workshop.

The 5th edition, for the first time will welcome 12 film archivists and film technicians from the Presidential Palace ARG Archive and the Afghan Film Organization including Dr. Sahraa Karimi, Director General of the Afghan Film Organization, who were responsible for saving their films from destruction under the Taliban regime. Practical sessions in chemical treatment of film in serious condition will also be introduced in FPRWI 2019. Additionally, practical sessions with the latest and world-class ARRISCAN XT will give participants hands-on training on scanning archival film.

FPRWI 2019 is supported by globally renowned industry bodies like The Film Foundation’s World Cinema Project, The Academy of Motion Picture, Arts & Sciences, Fondazione Cineteca di Bologna, L’Immagine Ritrovata, Bundesarchiv (German Federal Archives), Cinemateca Portuguesa, Institut National de l’audiovisuel (INA), Haghefilm Digitaal, San Francisco Silent Film Festival, FIAT/IFTA, A.V. Preservation by Reto, Media Inventions s.c., The Criterion Collection, Prasad Film Laboratories Pvt. Ltd. and ARRI.

Previous editions of the workshop have been conducted in Mumbai in 2015, Pune in 2016, Chennai in 2017 and Kolkata in 2018.

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