Eminent filmmaker Aribam Syam Sharma on Manipuri cinema

Imphal: Eminent filmmaker Aribam Syam Sharma categorically stated that Manipuri Cinema can leap forward if filmmakers study and infuse the Manipuri way of life, aesthetics and culture into the films.

“Manipur being endowed with rich culture and aesthetic values has huge potential for production of good films,” he said.

The 87 year old filmmaker was speaking during the second session of the ‘Talk Series on Film Direction’ on Wednesday at Preview Theatre, MSFDS in imphal, being held as part of the Festival of Cinemas of Manipur, the concluding event of the Golden Jubilee Celebration of Manipuri Cinema.

Syam Sharma said that he takes pride in asserting that being born a Manipuri, enabled him to make celebrated films like ‘Imagi Ningthem’, ‘Ishanou’, Yelhou Jagoi, The Marams, Sangai- The Dancing Deer etc. He added that such films are the products of Manipur, particularly its culture.

Syam then called on filmmakers to understand the nuances of Manipuri’ way of life. He also noted that Manipur probably could be the only small state in the world to have consistently sustained motion picture storytelling in its own language for 50 years.

He then advised budding as well as experienced filmmakers that Manipuri Cinema will suffer without ‘discipline’. Admitting lack of professional training among filmmakers and technical crews resulted in naive works, he asserted that it will be difficult to upscale the status of Manipuri Cinema without ‘formal training and film education.

“Discipline with space for individuality is inevitable while ego and false pride will lead to the downfall of Manipuri Cinema. The film community in Manipur is quite small and should consider themselves to be family and strive together for collective growth,” Syam added.

Also read: Festival of Cinemas of Manipur underway

The seasoned filmmaker went on to note that exhibitions of films have transitioned from big silverscreens to television and to the mobile phones in everyone’s pocket. In such an era with whopping technological advancements, proper training is must for the growth of Manipuri Cinema. With training comes awareness and understanding of the different roles, responsibilities and hierarchy of the crew, which eventually will cultivate discipline, he stressed.

He also added that choosing the right actors for particular characters goes a long way in the success of a film.

On Friday, Aribam Syam along with famed singer, Chongtham Kamala will have an extensive talk on film music and background scoring. Prior to this, ‘Imagi Ningthem’ and ‘Orchids of Manipur’ will be screened on Thursday afternoon for the participants to grasp the idea and have an in-depth understanding about the topic.

Again on April 25, Aribam Syam Sharma would be sharing his experience on acting and directing actors for cinema, aided by luminaries Manipuri film stars Yengkhom Roma and K. Tomba, a.k.a Lamza Tomba.

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