English VinglishNovember 21, 23 & 24

The festival is being presented in partnership with the University of Rochester, the Eastman School of Music, and Hamilton College 

Rochester, N.Y., November 15, 2019—The George Eastman Museum, in partnership with the University of Rochester, the Eastman School of Music, and Hamilton College will present Filmi Worlds: A Festival of Indian Cinema at the Dryden Theatre on November 21. The festival continues on November 23 and 24. This three-day film festival and symposium will combine film screenings, scholarly talks, and public conversations about South Asian film.

The George Eastman Museum is home to the largest collection of contemporary Indian cinema outside of India. Led by faculty from the University of Rochester and Hamilton College, and attracting contributors from across the Northeast, the festival is anchored on four 35mm screenings from the museum’s collection. Spanning more than five decades in Indian cinema, these films highlight the diversity in languages, customs, and culture that constitute the country. Each screening will be preceded by a panel of scholars of South Asian film and visual culture scholars on topics ranging from the film’s music to its social context to its place in the trajectory of a given film industry.

Filmi Worlds: A Festival of Indian Cinema schedule

Thursday, November 21
                7:30 p.m. English Vinglish (Gauri Shinde, India 2012, 134 min., 35mm, English and Hindi
                Welcome from Pavitra Sundar, Hamilton College 

Saturday, November 23

1 p.m. Film panel: Erica Jones, Eastman Museum; Nimanthi Rajasingham, Colgate University; and a brief introduction to the Eastman Museum’s Indian film collection by collection manager Deborah Stoiber

1:45 p.m. Kannathil Muthamittal (Mani Ratnam, India 2002, 123 min., 35mm, English, Tamil, and Sinhalese w/subtitles)

4 p.m. Reception, free and open to public 

7:30 p.m. Film panel: Gohar Siddiqui, Clark University; Praseeda Gopinath, Binghamton University; Tula Goenka, Syracuse University

8 p.m. Ghajini (A. R. Murugadoss, India 2008, 183 min., 35mm, Hindi and Urdu w/subtitles)


Sunday, November 24

12 p.m. Film panel: Anaar Desai-Stephens, Eastman School of Music; Harleen Singh, Brandeis University

12:30 p.m. Mughal-E-Azam (K. Asif, India 1960, 197 min., 35mm, Urdu w/subtitles)

4 p.m. Panel discussionGrowing Up with Indian Cinema: Community Perspectives
Panelists include Jyothsna Ponnuri, Micky Sanon, and Seshavadhani Kumar. Organized in conjunction with the Indian Community Center of Rochester.


Ticket Information

Tickets are required for each film screening and can be purchased at the Dryden Theatre box office. Tickets are $10 for general admission and $7 for museum members, students (with ID) and youth ages 5–17. All panel discussions are included in film admission. No Dryden Theatre Admit-1 or Take-10 passes will be accepted. For more information, visit eastman.org/dryden.

Filmi Worlds: A Festival of Indian Cinema is presented in partnership with the University of Rochester, the Eastman School of Music, and Hamilton College. Supported by the Central New York

Humanities Corridor from an award by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, and by the George Eastman Museum.


About the George Eastman Museum

Founded in 1947, the George Eastman Museum is the world’s oldest photography museum and one of the largest film archives in the United States, located on the historic Rochester estate of entrepreneur and philanthropist George Eastman, the pioneer of popular photography. Its holdings comprise more than 400,000 photographs, 28,000 motion picture films, the world’s preeminent collection of photographic and cinematographic technology, one of the leading libraries of books related to photography and cinema, and extensive holdings of documents and other objects related to George Eastman. As a research and teaching institution, the Eastman Museum has an active publishing program and, through its two joint master’s degree programs with the University of Rochester, makes critical contributions to the fields of film preservation and of photographic preservation and collection management. For more information, visit eastman.org.

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ATTN. MEDIA: Press images can be downloaded for promotional use here: https://eastmanmuseum.box.com/v/filmiworldsindianfilmfestival.

PhotoEnglish Vinglish

Media Contacts:

Kellie Fraver, Public Relations Manager


(585) 327-4813; (585) 314-1552 (mobile)