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DVDs of film 68 Pages July 18, 2008

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68 Pages DVD

68 Pages DVD

 

68 Pages

DVDs of the film can now be bought or ordered from the following organizations:

MUMBAI

The Humsafar Trust
3rd Floor, BMC Transit Building,
Nehru Road, Vakola,
Santacruz East,
Mumbai 400050, INDIA
phone: +91.22. 26673800
email: 68pages@gmail.com

DELHI

Magic Lantern Foundation
J-1881, Chittaranjan Park, Basement,
New Delhi – 110019, INDIA
Ph: 011-26273244
magiclantern.foundation@gmail.com
 

Kriti Film Club
S-35, Tara Apartments,
Alaknanda, New Delhi 110019, INDIA
Ph: 011-26477845/ 26213088
space@krititeam.org 


KOLKATA

SAATHII
Solidarity and Action Against The HIV Infection in India
229 Kalitala Main Road, Purbachal (North)
Calcutta 700 078, West Bengal, INDIA
91 33 2334 7329
saathii@yahoo.com

For more information and ordering online please check out www.humsafar.org/68pages/dvd.htm 

We welcome partner agencies in other cities who can stock DVDs of the film and help in local sales.

Indian Express Delhi July 5, 2008

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 Capital witnesses Pride walk, but 68 Pages of anguish gets no hearing

– by Paromita Chakrobarty

Posted online: Friday , July 04, 2008 at 11:54:39
Updated: Friday , July 04, 2008 at 11:54:39

New Delhi, July 3 Director Sridhar Rangayan’s award-winning movie on HIV-affected gays finds no hall for screening

On June 29, as Delhi’s saw its first Rainbow Pride March, Sridhar Rangayan was busy trying to organise shows for his latest film, 68 Pages.

Like his previous two films, 68 Pages deals with issues close to Rangayan’s heart — lives of MSMs (men who have sex with men) who have been infected with HIV.

“But for all the hullabaloo about increased awareness about gays, educated urban heterosexuals are still scared to show empathy. There is no aggressive homophobia, but no support either,” shrugs the 45-year-old human rights activist.

Rangayan has reasons to believe so.

His film, which won the Silver Remi at the Houston World Fest earlier this year, is yet to be released in India as no mainstream distributor has come forward to screen it.

“When I made the film, I tried my best to stick to the narrative mode, so the audience could connect with it even if the subject was unfamiliar. But when I met the distributors, I realised it did not matter. They all refused to screen it on ground that a film on homosexuality which talks about AIDS, is not going to bring them any audience,” he says.

In Delhi alone, Rangayan had got in touch with all major multiplex owners, but the experience, he says, has left him rather sceptical.

“The PVR authorities did not respond for the longest time. Finally, when I sent them a rather curt mail, they replied that it did not quite fit even their corporate social responsibility profile.”

68 Pages deals with the lives of five HIV positive individuals — a trans-sexual bar dancer, a gay couple, a sex worker and a drug user — each grappling to come to terms with their own lives.

The story is a narrative from the personal diary of a counsellor who worked with them.

But instead of a bleak, oblique narrative, Rangayan has focussed on the idea of hope and redemption.

He drew his inspiration from the first woman counsellor who worked at his NGO, Humsafar Trust, in Mumbai, one of India’s first organisations to work with sexual minorities. Humsafar Trust is also the co-producer of the film.

The IIT Mumbai alumnus, who has worked with directors like Kalpana Lajmi, Sai Paranjape among others, is now distributing the film via the NGO route.

Humsafar Trust and their associates have come forward to hold a 12-city promotion tour, which includes Mumbai, Baroda, Nagpur, Indore, Chennai, Kolkata and Bangalore.

“We are going to show at auditoriums and hold discussion sessions afterwards, so there is a dialogue. That’s the only way to clear misconceptions,” he says.

In Delhi, Rangayan has found support in Gargi Sen’s Magic Lantern Foundation, an NGO which distributes non-commercial films.

A screening will be held on July 10 at the India International Centre. Naz Foundation, an NGO as well as Kriti, a city-based film club, too are organising screening. Rangayan is also planning to bring out DVDs of the movie.

All these, the director, says, are a small step towards their ultimate goal.

“It’s not just Article 377 which needs amendment. There’s still a long way to go before people’s mindset about alternative sexuality changes,” he says.

Telegraph Kolkata July 5, 2008

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Telegraph Kolkata
Telegraph Kolkata
Queer crash
westside view

Telegraph, Kolkata, July 1 2008

 
 

The usual romances of Bollywood were turned on their head at a screening in Calcutta on Saturday — thanks in part to British funding. A new film, backed by the British Department for International Development (DFID), uses all the usual tropes of the Bollywood blockbuster: song, dance and close-up-spangled drama. But this time it is not a boy-meets-girl scenario. Here the lovers are transsexuals, bar dancers, prostitutes and a gay couple — and their tragedies are based on the real-life stories of those facing HIV in Mumbai.

68 Pages is directed by Sridhar Rangayan — who, I should declare, directed me in another gay film with British funding, Yours Emotionally!. But while Yours Emotionally! was in English and aimed primarily at an international film festival audience, 68 Pages is in Hindi and sloshing with plenty of Bolly thrills and spills. Sridhar has a different audience in mind.

“It is for a mainstream grassroots audience,” Sridhar tells me on the phone, after the Saturday screening. “We felt that we wanted to help change their way of looking at sexual minorities. DFID UK had a programme running in India which was doing advocacy work on HIV AIDS — and they wanted to do a film on the situation here.”

Looking at its assemblage of unusual characters — who are based on the stories of real-life friends of the Mumbai sexual health organisation, The Humsafar Trust — the film charts lives riddled with trauma, happiness and hope. It examines people who, stuck with HIV, are marginalised.

“This is a Bombay that we didn’t know of,” says Sridhar. “It’s the one we never stopped to think about it. It’s about interconnected stories of people in a city who don’t have time to connect.” He talks about the Oscar-winning movie Crash — the one which pipped Brokeback Mountain to take Best Film in tinsel town last year — even calling his film a “queer Crash”. His reasoning: it deals with HIV and sexuality where Crash dealt with race, through the lens of a city. “It is a Mumbai version of LA — we do not connect with the people around us,” Sridhar explains.

Did Calcutta connect? Speaking after the screening, perhaps unsurprisingly, Sridhar’s answer was yes. People had been crying and gasped through the film, he said. “Though the film is treated in a very melodramatic format, the characters are real. It could be about somebody right in the area you are living — a transsexual person that you never tried to understand.” The screening was part of Calcutta’s Rainbow Pride week, which culminated in a parade on Sunday.

While some gay rights activists may be cursing Britain for having ever brought the infamous section 377 to India, Shah Rukh Khan had nothing but praise for London this week. Visiting the British capital for social engagements, he found time to tell London reporter Anil Sinanan: “I say it as a joke to everyone that when the English left India, we were not going to let them go! It [London] is the greatest city in the world. It feels like an extension of middle-class Mumbai.” Home from home then? Maybe it’s the red buses that do it.

Jack Lamport
(A writer and part-time actor based in London)

Time Out Mumbai July 5, 2008

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Umrao

Umrao

 

From male Rekha imitators to gay executives, director Sridhar Rangayan has depicted a range of homosexual exeperiences in his films. 68 Pages is his third movie after Gulabi Aaina, about drag queens, and Yours Emotionally!, about a gay affair   British tourist and an Indian male. Rangayan’s new feature, 68 Pages, is about the lives of five HIV-positive individuals as told by counselor (Mouli Ganguly). The stories are of corporate employee Nishit (Zafar Karachiwala), prostitute Payal (Jayati Bhatia), transsexual bar dancer Umrao (Uday Sonawane), gay researcher Kiran (Joy Sengupta) and municipal sweeper Nathu (Abhay Kulkarni). The storytelling style is as basic as the aesthetics, but some episodes are moving, especially those of Umrao and Payal. 68 Pages is scheduled to be screened on June 26 at a city multiplex. A DVD release is also planned.