Where’s Sandra?

Where’s Sandra? If you saw her would you know here? Is she naughty or nice? And where is she, anyway? The film is a playful look at the figure of “Sandra from Bandra” – part covetous fantasy of the racy Christian girl from Bombay who works as a secretary, wears a dress and likes to dance; part condescending stereotype of a dowdy, religious girl from a minority community. The film searches for Sandra in Bollywood films, in the words of writers and poets and the stones in church graveyards. We encounter various claimants to the title – some who aren’t called Sandra and some who aren’t even from Bandra – until finally finding 5 women really called Sandra who are all as different from each other as can be even if they are a little bit the same.

  • Persistence/Resistance, Film South Asia, Kathmandu, Tasveer
  • South Asian Film Festival, Seattle
  • River to River Film Festival, Florence
  • Vibgyor Film Festival, Thrissur
  • Mumbai International Film Festival
  • Lille 3000

Paromita Vohra is a leading documentary filmmaker, writer and curator whose work has focuses on urban life, popular culture, gender, politics and art. Her films have been widely screened in festivals, galleries and popular screening spaces, besides being included in university syllabi around the world.

Thodi si zameen, thoda aasmaan

Director: Shashi Ghosh Gupta 8’/2009 /English

‘Thodi Si Zameen, Thoda Aasmaan’ has been showcased at the City Possible Film Festival 2012, organized by the National University of Singapore; Jeevika 2010 Asia Livelihood Documentary Film Festival at New Delhi; Madurai International Documentary & Short Film Festival and Persistence Resistance Film Festival at New Delhi.

Shashi Ghosh Gupta is a Filmmaking alumna of Xaviers’ Institute of Communication (XIC), Mumbai. She is an author and a documentary filmmaker, presently based in Ahmedabad. Besides ‘Thodi Si Zameen, Thoda Aasmaan’ Shashi has also made ‘Arzoo’, a documentary on Sulekha Ali, a young Muslim woman, who underwent an astonishing transformation post the 2002 Gujarat riots. ‘Arzoo’ has been screened in several Film Festivals and venues, including:

  • Madurai International Documentary & Short Film Festival
  • Persistence Resistance Film Festival, New Delhi
  • Abhivyakti 2010 – Ravi Bharati Bihar Video Festival, Patna
  • Sarojini Naidu School of Arts & Communications, Hyderabad
  • Samsung Women’s International Film Festival 2012, Chennai
  • ‘Our Lives To Live’ Festival of Films Against Gender Violence, Gwalior, Bhopal and Kaithal, Haryana

New improved Delhi

Director: Vani Subramanian 6 ‘/2003/ English subtitiles

By the turn of the century, Edwin Lutyen’s vision of colonial grandeur had metamorphosed into a New Delhi of global aspirations. The city has begun to love its new robes. But the hands that created the transformation have been forgotten: the metropolis has no space for the poor and their slums. Delhi has been witness to a spate of slum demolitions but 2000-2001 was the worst ever. More than 15,000 shanties, home to about 100,000 people, were destroyed. Thousands left the city and countless others lost their livelihoods, so that the city could ‘reclaim’ 1.5% of the total urban area of New Delhi. A short work propelled by an acapella chorus, the film welcomes you to the capital city of India.

Vani Subramanian, one-time advertising writer has been a women’s rights activist and documentary filmmaker since the nineties. Her work as a filmmaker spans a range of issues and concerns from the political economy of food to primary education to culture, urban development and communalism and the politics of sex selective abortions. Her Films have been recognised and screened both nationally and internationally and been used at a wide variety of discussion platforms.

I Ranu Gayen

Director: Shyamal Karmakar 10 ‘/2002/ No Dialogue

‘I Ranu Gayen’ is a film that portrays a post-modern yet surreal account of an urban woman, Ranu Gayen, within a crumbling space defined by four walls. An over-sized ugly fish, her favorite pet, in a small bowl and a phone, keeps her in touch with the outside world. Suddenly the bowl topples, leaving the fish gasping for oxygen. There is no water around except a couple of frozen mineral water bottles! She has to save her fish.

Shyamal Karmakar is filmmaker based in Kolkata. He passed out from FTII Pune in 1990 in editing. He has assisted Sayeed Mirza and Kundan Shah. He has worked as chief associate editor for Vidhu Vinod Chopra in ‘Parinda’. His directorial debut ‘Ranu’ has won him many awards and accolades in various international film festivals. After that Shyamal has made films like ‘Where is Home’, ‘Colour is Black’, ‘I, Ranu Gayen’ and ‘Baba Black Beard’. He now teaches editing in SRFTI, Kolkata and makes films.


Director: Uma Magal 3.30 ‘/2010/ Music

Uma Magal filmed her friend, artist Preetha Kannan, paint abstract forest-scapes in a gritty space in the suburban industrial ghetto of Navi Mumbai, two floors above a metal works factory. The process of filming sparked a journey. It grew from the initial idea of showcasing the evident irony of such contrast in a singular space, to a larger rumination on co-existence and balance between nature, art and “development”.

The short film screened along with Preetha Kannan’s exhibition “Gaia” at the Jehangir Art Gallery in Mumbai and had an invited screening and discussion at the Jatin Das film festival on art and artists in Bhuvaneshwar.

The mall on top of my house

Director: Aditi Chitre 5.5 min / 2006 / Animation

‘The Mall On Top Of My House’ is a film that swiftly captures the repercussions of land reclamation in bombay which have drastically altered the lives of its fishing community. creating metaphorical locations and characters, the film centers around a pale faced character who resides in a dark hole in the midst of a city choked with skyscrapers and ambitious plans of further ‘development’. through his mundane daily routine and reminiscence, a calmer past of the city is revealed. tracing the early appropriation of land for urban development, the viewer is brought back to the present to find even the dark hole residence of this character consumed by the city’s unrelenting tryst with ‘development’.

Editing – Pankaj Rishi Kumar

  • Tokyo Broadcasting System-DigiCon6+3 Territorial Award for recognition of effort in animation in India, 2007
  • Screened at 4th TRI Continental 2008-India.10th ISIFF 2008- Bangladesh.
  • Tricky Women 2007-Austria
  • 11th MadCat- USA.8th
  • Planet in Focus 2007
  • Canada.IAWRT 2007
  • INDIA.CMS Vatavaran 2007-India

Aditi Chitre is an animation filmmaker based in Bombay. After completing her BFA – specialising in Painting at the Faculty of Fine Arts, Baroda, in 2004, she made her first film, The Mall on Top of My House, which was screened at many festivals and was awarded the Tokyo Broadcasting System-DigiCon6+3 Territorial Award for recognition of effort in animation in India. She also freelances as a book designer and writes on art practices for Art & Deal magazine.

This land is mine

Dir : Nina Paley 3.35’/2013 / Music

A quick  animation film on the history of Palestine.

Nina Paley’s new “potential-possible-maybe-feature film” project is Seder-Masochism, and she’s posted a clip called “This Land Is Mine,” which she envisions as the final scene of the movie. “This Land Is Mine” is a history of the Holy Land and all the blood spilled over the years by various parties who laid claim to it. Her web page for the short features a full cast of characters, with historical notes, and, of course, the wonderful video itself.

Nina Paley is an American cartoonist, animator and free culture activist. She directed the animated feature film Sita Sings the Blues. She was the artist and often the writer of comic strips Nina’s Adventures and Fluff, but most of her recent work has been in animation.

City on the water

Director: Charles Correa 17 ‘/ 1975/  English/ Colour/Films Division

This film, written and directed by Charles Correa and photographed by Purush Baokar, is a cinematic meditation on images that we take for granted, but never tire of. The milling crowds at Bombay VT station (it was Bombay VT then); the lashing monsoon waves at Marine Drive and Worli Seaface, with children reveling in the splash; the cliched-but-ever-energetic image of the crowds on busy south Bombay roads along with archival footage from 1950s films on Bombay, which were much recycled in many FD documentaries. That is what iconic images are for anyway!

It is fascinating to watch this film so many years after it was made, with the awareness of the present-day realities of Bombay and New Bombay. The film forces us to reflect on the ever-changing and sometimes never-changing aspects of metropolitan life.

Camera: Purush Baokar
Sound: NS Krishna
Animation: MA Narvekar, MV Devidasan, DV Jog
Voices: Pearl Padamsee, Gerson Da Cunha
Editing: A Habib
Music: Vijay Raghav Rao
Production: Pramod Pati
Produced by: CIDCO and Govt. of Maharashtra


Director : Pramod Pati 4 ‘/ 1970/ Music/B and W/Films Division

A film using techniques such as stop motion photography, pixillation and animation to interpret the city of Bombay in the seventies.

Pramod Pati, who died an untimely death at the age of 42, worked for the Films Division. This Our lndia, Ravi Shankar, Hamara Rashtragan, which were all competently made, but it was in his very short films lasting sometimes one or two minutes such as Klaxplosion, Perspectives, Trip, Violence and Explorer (seven minutes) that Pati came into his own. Pati had his early training in animation filmmaking under the celebrated Jiri Trinka, the Czech master. With work ranging from folklore (Czech Legends, 1953) and national literature (The Good Soldier Schweik, 1954) to Shakespeare (A Midsummer Night’s Dream, 1959) Hans Anderson and haunting visions of present and future, Trinka made the puppet film into a new and important genre. His example was of inestirnable importance to other filmmakers working in the same genre.

Film Festival

The film festival at Do Din will showcase unique documentaries carefully curated to reiterate the urban themes discussed during the two days. Each film will be followed by discussions. Also included in the festival is a selection of short films that one doesn’t get to see often.

The festival is made possible in association with Documentary Circle of Hyderabad, Films Division – Mumbai, and Public Service Broadcasting Trust – Delhi.

Many thanks to Sumanaspati Reddy and Madhumeeta Sinha  for their amazing help curating this film festival!