19.11.2015

Carlos Saura and Zoya Akhtar receive the SICF Award

The award, presented on 12 July, recognises the work of both film-makers in bringing Spanish and Indian culture closer

As announced on the latest Board meeting of the Spain India Council Foundation, the 3rd SICF Award will be jointly presented to film-makers Zoya Akhtar and Carlos Saura. This award recognises the work of people or institutions that have stood out for their contribution to bilateral relations between Spain and India. The ceremony, which took place on 12 July at the National Archaeological Museum in Madrid, was part of the activities to mark the 60th anniversary of diplomatic relations between the two countries.

Indian director and screen-writer Zoya Akhtar launched the film Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara in 2011, a road movie set in Spain which had over 70 million viewers in India and won several awards for Best Director. One of those awards was presented to Akhtar by SICF's former Secretary General Manuel Cacho in 2012 (Best Indian Movie Filmed Abroad) at the Mumbai Film Festival. The film, which gave an updated and appealing image of Spain, had a great impact in India and increased civil society's interest in the country. In addition to this, the number of Indian visitors in 2012 (the year after its premiere) increased by 80%.

Spanish director Carlos Saura is well known in India for his film-making career. He has participated in several festivals and cultural events in India and worked closely with Indian film-makers. He was presented with awards to his careers at the Mumbai and Kerala Film Festivals in 2008 and 2013. Saura's interest in researching the origins of flamenco in India has opened new paths of cultural exchange between the two countries. On October 1, he premiered his latest show,  Flamenco, India in Valladolid, designed as a dialogue between the two cultures through music and dance. 

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