‘Valley of Saints’ comes to Mumbai

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Saima Bhat

After winning a number of awards at the global level, the Kashmiri language movie, Valley of Saints is all set to be screened at the 14th Mumbai Film Festival on Wednesday.

Musa Sayeed

Valley of Saints is a debut movie by a New York based Kashmir-born film director, Musa Sayeed. The film, a romantic drama in a conflict area with emphasis over ecology has bagged two major awards – the Alfred P Sloan Feature Film Award and the World Cinema Audience Award: Dramatic.

Soon after its release, it triggered rave reviews at the Sundance Festival where it won the audience award earlier this year. The film was recently screened at the 20th Hamburg International Film Festival in Germany. The movie, which will be in competition for First Feature Films of Directors at Mumbai, has been screened at many festivals across the globe.
Director Musa Sayeed had not spent much time in the homeland of his parents till 2009. His father, a political prisoner in Kashmir in the 1960s, after setting foot in the US never returned back to Kashmir. But Syeed visited Valley as soon as he could afford on his own and returned rich with the idea of making his first feature film.

Local actors and crew were part of Musa’s directorial debut. Actors Mohammad Afzal Sofi, a journalist and Gulzar Ahmad Bhat, a boatman, the two protagonists of Valley of Saints, have no experience of acting but they took a chance when Musa offered them a role in his film.

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