India will be the official country of honour at the upcoming Marche’ Du Film, organised alongside the 75th edition of Cannes Film Festival, in France, the Information & Broadcasting Minister Anurag Thakur, announced on Wednesday.

“It is the first time the Marché du Film has an official Country of Honour, and this special focus will continue annually with different nations in the spotlight at future editions,” he added.

“France and India are marking 75 years of their diplomatic ties, the Prime Minister’s visit to Paris and meeting with President Macron takes even more significance in this context. It is in this significant diplomatic backdrop that India has been chosen as the ‘Country of Honour’ at Marche’ Du Film at the Cannes Film Festival,” the offical statement from the Ministry added.

The I&B Minister added that the “Country of Honour” status thereby ensured India’s presence as a “focus country” at the opening Night of Marche Du Films putting a spotlight on India, its cinema, its culture and heritage.

The Minister added that India is also a “Country of Honour at the Cannes Next,” under which five new start-ups would be given an opportunity to pitch to the Audio-Visual Industry, while ten professionals will participate in Animation Day.

At this edition of Cannes Film Festival, there will also be world premier of “Rocketry” produced by R Madhavan. The movie would be showcased at the Palais des Festivals of the market screening on the 19th May 2022, the statement added .

India has also been given an opportunity to pitch five selected movies at the “Goes to Cannes Section”. These movies are part of the Work In Progress lab under the Film Bazaar and include Baghjan by Jaicheng Zxai Dohutia (Assamese), Bailadila by Shailendra Sahu (Hindi, Chhattisgarhi), Ek Jagah Apni (A Space of Our Own) by Ektara Collective (Hindi), Follower by Harshad Nalawade (Marathi, Kannada, Hindi) and Shivamma by Jai Shankar (Kannada).

A cinema hall called the Olympia Screen has been dedicated to India on 22nd May 2022 for screening “unreleased movies”. “India’s celebration of centenary of Satyajit Ray continues at Cannes as a remastered classic of Satyajit Ray classic - Pratidwandi will be screened at the Cannes Classic section Cinéma de la plage,” the Ministry stated.

Speaking on the features of India Pavilion this time, Thakur said the pavilion will have the sole focus of branding India as the content hub of the world. “It will showcase Indian cinema across linguistic, cultural, and regional diversities of the country and will serve as networking platform for delegates from across the global community, aiming to establish international partnerships in film shooting, distribution, production, script development, technology, promoting film sales and syndication,” he added.