Rima Das on Village Rockstars’ Oscar journey

The road to the Oscars has ended for Village Rockstars director Rima Das. But looking back at the journey of the Assamese drama, she says it has been one full of love, hopes and aspirations.

The Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences on Monday announced that nine films have advanced to the next round of voting in the Foreign Language Film category for the 91st Academy Awards. Village Rockstars, a little film with a big heart, was not one of them.

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Sharing a heart-warming photograph of the children in the film, Das wrote an emotional Instagram post about the love that the movie has received in a journey that has seen it travel to festivals in the nooks and corners of the world.

“How we have all grown since we first began. Back then, little did we — my band of rockstars and I — know how far from the village our film would take us. From Toronto to Paris, Cairo to Los Angeles and even all the way back home, the love which greeted us in every town, at every screening, was beyond any of our wildest dreams.

“Without that love — all its warmth and generosity — we could not have made it as far as we have. So thank you. Thank you for opening your hearts to our film. For allowing it to enter you, live with you, breathe with you. Our journey towards the Oscars might end today, but it has been an incredible journey full of hopes and aspirations. Thank you for being there every step of the way.”

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She ended the note saying: “We will keep our faith alive to keep dreaming.”

Village Rockstars is set in Das’s own village of Chhaygaon in Assam. The film follows Dhunu, a girl who grows up in poverty and learns to fend for herself. However, that does not prevent her from following her dream of forming a rock band and owning a guitar someday.

Starring Bhanita Das in the lead role, the film had its world premiere at the 2017 Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) and has traversed prestigious international and national film festivals, besides bagging the Best Feature Film trophy at the 65th National Film Awards, as well as winning honours for Best Child Artist, Best Location Sound Recordist and Best Editing.


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