Bhojpuri film Deswa has been selected for the Indian Panorama section at the International Film Festival of India (IFFI), Goa, to be held from November 20 to 30.
Director Nitin Chandra, who happens to be Bollywood actress Neetu Chandra's brother, has made history by directing the first-ever Bhojpuri film to be selected for the prestigious event. Displaying the confirmation mail sent by Tanu Rai, the deputy director (Indian Panorama) IFFI/director of film festival, ministry of information and broadcasting, to The Telegraph, Nitin said: "I was checking my email this morning. I could not believe it when I saw the mail. It is a big achievement because many directors had sent their films to the festival and out of 200 movies, Deswa has been selected."
Neetu, the producer of the film, said: "I did not think twice when my brother said he wants to direct a film based on a realistic story. It is a proud moment for the entire crew. It shows that our state does not lack in any field and we have the talent to produce good directors and actors."
A visibly excited Nitin said: "I am delighted as it was my debut film. I gave my blood and sweat to it. When the film was released on November 25, 2011, no cinema was ready to accept the film. It was released in just eight theatres in Patna, which was disappointing. But I never lost patience and kept on promoting the film."
The director added: "The film was screened at the South Asian Film Festival and Habitat Film Festival. It was recently screened at IIM-Ahmedabad. Bhojpuri movies need to go further to reach the peak."
The film, made under the banner of Champaran Talkies revolves around the lives of three young men from Bihar and various dead ends in their lives that lead them towards a life of crime. After spending several years in prison, they come out to find that Bihar has changed. Many singers have lent their voice to the film, including Sonu Niigaam, Sunidhi Chauhan, Sharda Sinha, Mika, Shreya Ghoshal, Bhojpuri folk singer Bharat Vyas and Swanand Kirkire.