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Top 10 Indian Film Festivals


Film festivals are sites of discovery and ritual, where audiences of all ages and interests may learn about and enjoy film and cinema. What makes film festivals so valuable and special is the level playing field they present. It has the ability to level the playing field for films of different genres, finances, and star power. Every year, the number of Indian film festivals established and held have increased significantly. We’ve compiled a list of Indian film festivals to check out.

Mumbai Film Festival – Jio MAMI

MAMI is one of many Indian film festivals held in Mumbai.

The Mumbai Academy of Moving Image (MAMI), which hosts and organises the festival, was founded in 1997 in Mumbai, the heart and soul of Indian cinema. The purpose of this festival has been to instil an interest in and appreciation for outstanding films among the Indian audience since its start.

This film festival has successfully brought together filmmakers from all over the world over the course of twenty plus years, providing them with a fantastic forum for the exchange of ideas. The festival takes place over the course of a week in Mumbai and includes panels, workshops, and masterclasses with industry stalwarts like as Anurag Kashyap, Raja Sen, Monica Belucci, and Darren Aronofsky, to name a few.

KASHISH – Mumbai

Kashish is one of few LGBTQ Indian film festivals held in Mumbai.

Even though it only began in 2010, Mumbai, the film kingdom, has recently become the epicenter of India’s LGBT film festival. Kashish has become one of South Asia’s most important queer film festivals. From feature films to short films, documentaries, and experimental films, there is something for everyone.

Kashish brings to life the many voices, realities, and complexity of queer life in India and around the world. Sridhar Rangayan, the festival’s founder, has always advocated for a celebration of LGBTQ identities, and it uses cinema to entertain as well as educate, change, and provoke thought.

Jaipur International Film Festival – JIFF

JIFF is an international film festival held in Jaipur.

Since its inception in 2009, the Jaipur Film Festival has continued to attract both public and critical attention. The organizers’ mission statement is to promote a discourse between various communities and nations around the world through the medium of cinema. The festival is usually held in January for five days.

The objective of the festival is to bring together veteran and young filmmakers, as well as audiences, film critics, and the media. During the film festival, they host a film showing as well as a film-making tutorial and workshop.

The Ahmedabad International Independent Film Festival

AIFF is an international film festival held in Ahmedabad.

The Ahmedabad International Independent Film Festival is an annual event that takes place in Ahmedabad, India. It first took place in 2009, and it has been held every October since then. The organizers’ major goal is to raise awareness about indie film making, as well as to support and introduce indie filmmakers to the public. This festival offers script writing, film making, and photography seminars in addition to contests.

Chennai International Film Festival – CIFF

CIFF is an international Indian film festival held in Chennai.

The South Indian Film Chamber of Commerce, the Government of Tamil Nadu, and the Film Federation of India are all sponsors of the Chennai International Film Festival (CIFF). Its purpose is to give a common platform for individuals to express themselves through film, learn about various cultures, and contribute to the growth of the art form by increasing awareness and appreciation of it. If you’re a film buff, you’ll appreciate this festival, which is one of the best in the South.

The festival honors the greatest of Tamil cinema with a Tamil Feature Film Competition, in which 12 shortlisted films vie for a reward of Rs. 6 lakh each year.

The International Film festival of India – IFFI

IFFI is one of the international Indian film festivals held in Goa.

The Film Division of the Government of India organises IFFI. The first festival was held in New Delhi in 1952 under the patronage of Jawaharlal Nehru. It has relocated multiple times over the years, from Kolkata to Bombay to Madras. IFFI established its base in Goa in 2004, and it has been held yearly in Goa throughout the months of November and December since then.

VIBGYOR International Film Festival

VIBGYOR is an international Indian film festival held in Kerala.

The VIBGYOR International Film Festival, held yearly in Thrissur, Kerala, is organised by the VIBGYOR Film Collective and has established itself as an international festival that film fans look forward to for its selection of documentaries and short films.

The film festival is unique in that it addresses a variety of subjects such as identity, gender, sexuality, and rights.

Kolkata International Film Festival – KIFF

KIFF is one of the oldest Indian film festivals.

The Kolkata International Film Festival is India’s second oldest film festival, held in the land of art and cinema, where giants such as Rabindranath Tagore and Satyajit Ray were born. The City of Joy will leave no stone unturned in its quest to promote joy and happiness to all cinema fans throughout the globe! It has evolved into a larger and more inclusive celebration of cinema, one that is not just large but also accessible to the general public.

In terms of profile, publicity, and reach, the festival has risen to unprecedented heights. This film festival has now become a major event for the West Bengal government.

CMS Vatavaran Film Festival and Forum – Delhi

CMS Vatavaran is an Indian film festival held in Delhi.

This one-of-a-kind effort, organised by the Centre for Media Studies (CMS) Delhi is India’s only international environmental and wildlife film festival. It occurs every two years. The festival has used this platform to bring together conservationists, wildlife lovers, and enthusiasts, demonstrating how film and art can be used as a tool for change.

Dharamshala International Film Festival – DIFF

DIFF is an international film festival held in Dharamshala.

Dharamshala International Film Festival is an annual film festival held in Dharamshala, India. This small independent film festival, which has been held in the peaceful dreaming town of Mcleodganj (Himachal Pradesh) since November 2012, has been a great success. Their main goal was to provide a venue for the local people to view good alternative film.

DIFF has grown into one of India’s biggest independent film festivals, attracting people from all around the country and beyond. The Dharamshala International Film Festival, which is usually held in October/November, is a season of film magic unlike any other.

We hope you enjoyed learning about these 10 Indian film festivals.

Check out more selections by Sneha here.

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