A final year post graduate student of Film & Video communication of National Institute of Design (NID), Saurabh Vyas has won the Best Student Documentary award at Jeevika: Asia Livelihood Documentary Festival-13, for his film “In Citylights”. He shares the award jointly with FTII student’s film.
About In City Lights
In City Lights is a portrait documentary. Seventy year old Mohammad Hussein is earning his livelihood from two different jobs. On alternate days he used to color the clothes and on the next day he is used to deliver those colorful clothes on bicycle covering 20 km distance from one place to another. Daily, from early morning to noon, Hussein sells colorful toys at Manekchok. This film has shown different point of views of a film maker and Hussein. Every character has a different life and that is what shown in the film. There are many street lights you make out while watching the film.
“The film was a part of my forth semester project. Basically we used to gather in different areas of the city for documentary workshop. During that time we used to meet the person whose story is narrated in the short film. My vision for the story became more cleared after having conversation with Mohammad Hussein – main character of the film. I have spent several hours talking with him at Manekchok” said Saurabh Vyas.
“I have visualized and realized the surroundings more sensitively and in this process, a character came out. It’s all about hope and happiness. The film is triumph to portrait a character who without any greed always smiling and enjoying his work. This is very simple film as decided before making the film.” added Vyas.
The Jury Citation for Saurabh’s film “In City lights”
“This visually stylish film allows the soundtrack to be dictated by its most colorful protagonist. At one level, it is the story of the decline of an industry, and the search for an alternative livelihood. At another, deeper level, it makes the viewer ponder the meaning of success. If you can be a hero to yourself, then you have liberated yourself from that most pernicious of human afflictions, poor self-esteem.”
Jeevika is Asia’s most unique documentary festival that is held annually in the city of New Delhi. The focus of the festival is capturing livelihood challenges faced by the rural and urban poor. Jeevika began in 2003; it awards the best long and short documentary and best student documentary among others.