South Indian women scriptwriters enhance skills in US-India workshop

Indian filmmakers Mahesh Narayanan, Indu Lakshmi, and Sudha Padmaja Francis; workshop mentors Bina Paul, Triparna Banerjee, Pamela Ribon, and Maria Raquel Bozzi of Film Independent, with participants of the screenwriting workshop. Photo: Special Arrangement

Kochi: Ten emerging women scriptwriters from south India honed their craft at a five-day Screenwriting Retreat organised by the US Consulate General in Chennai, in collaboration with Global Media Makers (GMM), held from February 10 to 14 in Alappuzha, Kerala. Led by renowned US and Indian filmmaker mentors including Ruth Atkinson, Pamela Ribon, and GMM Fellow Triparna Banerjee, the program aimed to equip participants from Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Karnataka, and Andhra Pradesh with insights into US film industry best practices.

Supported by the US Consulate General in Chennai, the retreat facilitated interactions between the writers and American filmmakers, fostering collaboration and advancing #USIndiaFWD initiatives.

Esteemed Indian filmmakers Mahesh Narayanan, Indu Lakshmi, Sudha Padmaja Francis, and GMM Fellow Christo Tomy shared invaluable insights from their experiences navigating the Indian filmmaking landscape.

Global Media Makers (GMM), a cultural exchange program supported by Film Independent and the US Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs (ECA), facilitated the retreat, aiming to enhance scriptwriting and cinematic storytelling with a focus on gender-sensitive issues. The workshop, designed by award-winning film editor Bina Paul, emphasised the portrayal of women in film and encouraged participants to explore their artistic goals.

Jennifer Bullock, public affairs officer at US Consulate General Chennai, emphasised the power of films in sensitizing global audiences to women's socio-economic empowerment. Maria Raquel Bozzi, a senior director at Film Independent, expressed honour in collaborating with Indian filmmaker Bina Paul and the US Consulate General Chennai to nurture emerging talent from south India.

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