Attending the screening of Mari Selvaraj’s Pariyerum Perumal (2018) at the ongoing 49th International Film Festival of India (IFFI) in Goa, director Pa Ranjith stated that the festival ought to have picked his latest film Kaala (2018) as a mark of its true inclusive nature.
The director won critical acclaim for his take on caste and discrimination in the Rajinikanth-starrer, which also went on to be a commercial success. However, the film was a notable absentee at this year’s Indian Panorama (Mainstream) section which boasts of Hindi films like Raazi (2018), Tiger Zinda Hai (2017), and Padmaavat (2018).
Speaking to PTI, a news agency, Ranjith said, “Unfortunately, they have not selected the film at IFFI. I don’t understand why Tiger Zinda Hai was selected and Kaala was not. I don’t know what’s happening. Tiger Zinda Hai was not even critically acclaimed. But Kaala was. That’s why I have to fight more and more.”
Ranjith was at the screening of Pariyerum Perumal on Wednesday (21 November). Selvaraj’s film also tells the story of an individual oppressed due to his caste, and carries a lot of political subtext.
Speaking about his own political subtext, Ranjith said, “I am in politics. Cinema is a very political medium. I’m a politician.”
The director is set to begin work on his next project, based on the struggle of the tribal freedom fighter, Birsa Munda. Speaking on the subject, the director said, “He was the leader and it was the tribals that led the freedom movement from the front as they were the first ones to be affected with all the land grabbing that started with the British and it still continues.”