Bharath Stores, directed by P Sheshadri, is indeed finding acclaim. It is the only Kannada film selected for the 44th International Film Festival of India organised by the IFFI Secretariat under the aegis of the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, Government of India in collaboration with the Government of Goa.
Speaking to City Express, Sheshadri shared his feeling about the selection. "I am glad that Bharath Stores will be seen by an international audience. In a way, the film is based on an international subject. The attempt was to make the film focusing on Foreign Direct Investment (FDI), a burning issue that has often been discussed. Every country is facing this problem. So IFFI festival becomes a suitable platform to showcase the concerns revolving around the issue," says Sheshadri.
Apart from IFFI festival, Bharath Stores will also screened be at the Kolkata International Film Festival which is starting from November 10. While the film is slowly getting popular at various film festivals, there is nothing much being done to reach the local audience.
"We are only doing a number of films but there is no awareness creation among the audience. I feel, it is the right time to educate people to watch such kind of films," says Sheshadri who also admits that the technology has made watching cinema much easier. "Today we have people who watch it on their computers. I got to know that Bharath Stores has been watched by people who own provisional stores, especially the Shettys residing in Bhadravathi, Tumkur and surrounding areas because they feel the film revolves around their issues," he adds.
The director has other concerns too. According to him it is unfortunate that only one Kannada film has been selected to be showcased at IFFI while they have more than a couple of Malayalam, Bengali, Marathi and Hindi films. "There were at least 22 to 25 films competing for this festival but the sad part is that there was not one jury member representing our regional language. In my opinion, there should have been at least 2 to 3 Kannada films added to the list. Every year we have had a jury member representing our region. This is the first time in 15 years that we did not have anybody representing Karnataka," he says.
Seshadri also feels that government should not just give awards and wash their hands; they should also take up the responsibility of screening such films to as many people as possible. "We have information centres at most of the places in Karnataka. The government can organise a DVD show at these places or they can have one theatre where they can only screen award winning films," he says.