Unlike in the other years, the Cannes Film Festival (17 May-28 May) has created a great stir among the movie enthusiasts this year, too. The 2022 edition of the festival being held after part virtual, part in-person styles during the pandemic time is said to be poised for creating sensations in many areas. A few great surprises are said to be in the making. Most of them are related to the movies in 'feature', 'historic genre', 'short films' and 'documentary' segments. As has been seen in the recent years, the experimental movie works by young Bangladeshi film makers are expected to be screened in the general screening section. In the past years a few bold attempts were acclaimed by the different festival committees. These works couldn't fetch any award for Bangladesh. But they had at least let the Cannes audiences know about Bangladesh, where film-making is recognised as a serious exercise in the greater domain of the arts.
What's most important, in the 75-year history of the Cannes Film Festival in France, the world's most prestigious film exposing events, the Bangla speaking director Satyajit Ray, with ancestral roots in East Bengal (now Bangladesh) became the first South Asian to be honoured with the Cannes' Best Director's award. The movie for which Ray received the award was 'PatherPanchali'. The year was 1956.
It is true Bangladesh in its fifty years' history has produced a few exceptionally talented film makers. They had begun their journey in the pre-Bangladesh Pakistan times. The reason they broke new grounds in the new state of Bangladesh was their being enriched with new subjects emerging from the popular movements in the 1960s, culminating in the Liberation War of 1971. Although the younger-generation film makers dived into the turbulent years shaking East Bengal to pick their suitable subjects, they often faced difficulty choosing a suitable theme. To a massive feeling of grief for the nation, a grand subject unfolded before the nation in the 21st century. By that time the dust gathering around the assassination of the Father of the Nation had been removed. The sitting government in 2019 decided to make a biopic on the independence leader Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman. The idea of making the biographical movie visibly came from the grand biopic 'Gandhi' made by Richard Attenborough. The movie had Ben Kingsley, the seasoned stage actor from the British Shakespearean school, as Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi. The movie bagged all the major awards at the Oscars, 1983.
When it comes to Bangladesh, its undisputed independence leader Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and his associates, the 9-month-long Liberation War in 1971 fought upon his unequivocal declaration of independence, the biopic on the leader has kept the country's movie buffs in a rare state of mood --- filled with great anticipation and suspense. Had it not for the delay caused by the 2-year pandemic, the biopic 'Mujib - The Making of a Nation' would have already graced the Cannes Film Festival's competition section held at the Palais des Festvals building venue. Although the choice of the director of 'Mujib' --- India's non-Bengalee celebrity director Shyam Benegal, triggered a considerable volume of murmur, the general movie viewers had been wistfully looking forward to the movie. At the 75th Cannes Film Festival, the Bangladeshi, Indian and the other South Asian viewers, however, were given the opportunity to watch a short trailer of the biopic lasting 1 minute and 30 seconds. The trailer, a fleeting glimpse of the biopic 'Mujib' opened the way for Bangladesh to joining a global event showing the nation's emergence, as well as the birth centenary of Sheikh Mujib. The nation hopes the complete full-length movie on the leader's eventful life will find its entry in the Cannes Competition Section in the very next year.