After winning two honours at Berlinale, Nagesh Kukunoor’s film "Dhanak" bagged the Best Film Award in the main category – Children’s Feature Film Competition — at the Cinema in Sneakers Children’s Festival in Poland.
Elated over the win, Kukunoor says a feel-good feeling has seeped in as the award is “a validation from another part of the world”.
“Every time we win an award, it makes us feel good as it is a validation from another part of the world. When we won an award in Berlin, it was truly gratifying that my vision has reached a good and satisfying end. It states a new beginning,” Kukunoor said.
The film, co-produced by Manish Mundra, Kukunoor and Elahe Hiptoola, was accorded with the honour on Sunday. The festival was held from June 13-21, read a statement.
Kukunoor, who couldn’t attend the festival, shared a recorded message thanking the festival authorities and the audience for honouring the film.
This is not the first international acclaim for the film. It was screened at International Film Festival Los Angeles (IFFLA) and at Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF), Kids.
The film also clinched two awards — the Grand Prix for the Best Feature-length film and the Special Mention for the Best Feature Film by The Children’s Jury for Generation Kplus – at the 65th Berlin International Film Festival.
Kukunoor, known for movies like "Iqbal" and "Dor", added that finding a right balance in the international circuit is crucial to take stories to foreign shores.
“It is kind of nice to balance the international festivals as well with Indian release and reaching out to wide audience,” he said.
Shot in the bylanes of a Rajasthan town, the film, which stars Hetal Gada and Krrish Chhabria in the lead roles, revolves around little girl Pari’s endeavour at getting her brother’s eyesight restored.
They set out on a journey where they come across myriad colours of life to meet superstar Shah Rukh Khan, who on a poster, promised his viewers “new eyes”.
Hiptoola was also thrilled with the win.
“So thrilled with the victory in Poland. Its amazing how good stories can cut across cultures and ages. The amazing journey with ‘Dhanak’ continues,” Hiptoola told IANS over a message.