Cannes 2024: Payal Kapadia's All We Imagine As Light Enters Competiton

The main Competition schedule includes Bird by Andrea Arnold, The Shrouds by David Cronenberg, Oh Canada by Paul Schrader, and Anora by Sean Baker.

Published on Apr 12, 2024  |  04:03 PM IST |  47.1K
Cannes 2024: Payal Kapadia's All We Imagine
Payal Kapadia ( PC : IMDb )

All We Imagine As Light, directed by Indian filmmaker Payal Kapadia, made history on Thursday when it was selected for the prestigious In Competition section of the Cannes Film Festival, where it will compete for the coveted Palme d'Or. This is the first Indian film to be featured in the festival in almost 40 years.

All We Imagine As Light set to take on Cannes 2024

At a press conference that was live-streamed from Cannes, France, Iris Knobloch, President of the Cannes Festival, and Thierry Fremaux, General Delegate, revealed the official selection lineup for the 2024 edition of the gala. In addition to Ms. Kapadia, Santosh, a film by British-Indian director Sandhya Suri, will be screened at the 77th film gala. The film is scheduled to be exhibited in the Un Certain Regard area.

Payal Kapadia ( Twitter )

Under the main category, Ms. Kapadia's All We Imagine As Light will be shown with nineteen other much-awaited films, including Yorgos Lanthimos' Kinds of Kindness and Francis Ford Coppola's Megalopolis. Alumna of the Film & Television Institute of India (FTII), Ms. Kapadia is most renowned for her critically praised documentary A Night of Knowing Nothing. The film made its world premiere at the Director's Fortnight side-bar of the 2021 Cannes Film Festival, where it was awarded the Oeil d'or (Golden Eye) prize.

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Her first narrative feature, All We Imagine As Light, was also written by Ms. Kapadia. In the movie, Prabha, a nurse, gets an unexpected present from her long-divorced husband that completely upends her life. Anu, her younger flatmate, searches the large city for a quiet place where she may spend time alone with her partner, but to no avail.

Payal Kapadia ( Instagram )

According to the plot, one day, the two nurses take a road trip to a beach town where the mythical woodland turns into a place where their wishes come true. Filmmaker Anurag Kashyap and writer-lyricist Varun Grover praised Ms. Kapadia on her choice.

Will Payal Kapadia make history at Cannes?

"A huge milestone in Indian film history. An Indian film breaking into the main competition at Cannes is so unique that it only occurs once in a generation, if at all. Team Payal Kapadia, let's go!" Mr. Grover wrote on X and recently made his directing debut with "All India Rank." A frequent visitor to Cannes, Mr. Kashyap, posted a screenshot of the news on his Instagram Stories. "An Indian film is competing at the Cannes Film Festival." In the post's caption, he wrote, "Congratulations, Payal Kapadia!".

Payal Kapadia ( Twitter )

Kharij, directed by the renowned Mrinal Sen, was the last Indian film to be considered for the prestigious Palme d'Or award in 1983. Before that, several films were chosen for the Cannes Competition section, including M. S. Sathyu's Garm Hava (1974), Satyajit Ray's Parash Pathar (1958), Raj Kapoor's Awaara (1953), V. Shantaram's Amar Bhoopali (1952), and Chetan Anand's Neecha Nagar (1946).

The only Indian film to have taken home the top prize at Cannes in 1946 was Neecha Nagar. The prize was the Grand Prix du Festival International du Film. The Un Certain Regard runs concurrently with the main competition, where Ms. Suri's Santosh will go off against fourteen other films. Shahana Goswami stars in the character-driven neo-noir thriller set in the northern Indian hinterlands in this Hindi language film, a co-production between the United Kingdom and Europe.

The Second Act by Quentin Dupieux will open the 77th edition. The film festival will take place from May 14 to May 25.

ALSO READ: Who is Payal Kapadia? Know all about director whose film All We Imagine As Light will compete at Cannes 2024

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