Stuttgart acquires Indian tastes

Fest opens with 'Outsourced'

BERLIN — India’s cinematic and culinary cuisine is coming to the city of Stuttgart next month for the 4th annual Bollywood and Beyond film festival, which kicks off with John Jeffcoat’s “Outsourced.”

Pic, which screened last year in Toronto, follows a young office manager in Seattle forced to travel to India after his service call center is relocated in Mumbai.

Organized by the Baden-Wurttemberg Film Office (Filmbuero Baden-Wurttemberg), Bollywood and Beyond showcases recent feature films from or relating to India that present diverse portrayals of the country.

Fest selections include works by young independent Indian filmmakers as well as high-profile Bollywood productions.

Also screening this year is Rajnesh Domalpalli’s debut pic “Vanaja,” which won the director the first feature film prize at this year’s Berlinale.

In addition, the fest will honor the late multi-hyphenate Chetan Anand, an early Cannes winner who took the Grand Prize for his 1946 pic “Neecha Nagar” (“Lowly City”). Anand’s son, filmmaker Ketan Anand, will be on hand at the event for the special tribute.

The fest bestows four prizes, the main German Star of India as well as documentary, short film and a Bollywood audience award.

Bollywood and Beyond launched in 2004 after being developed by an Indian producers’ association and Stuttgart city officials who were part of a delegation to Mumbai, Stuttgart’s partner city.

The event, which runs July 11-15, is quickly becoming much more than a regional film fest: Showcasing the strong ties between the two cities, the event is expanding into a major cultural and economic happening that will include the Indian Food Festival and the Indo-German Business Forum.

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