'Andhadhun' to Open 17th Indian Film Festival of Los Angeles

Tabu - Getty - H 2019
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The festival will also pay tribute to Bollywood actress Tabu, star of Mira Nair's 'The Namesake' and Ang Lee's 'Life of Pi.'

The 17th edition of the Indian Film Festival of Los Angeles (IFFLA) will open with Sriram Raghavan's Bollywood thriller Andhadhun.

The film, which was a critical and commercial hit when it opened in India last October, tells the story of a desperate actress who is caught disposing of her husband’s body in front of a presumably blind pianist (Ayushmann Khurrana).

Andhadhun stars legendary actress Tabu who is subject of a tribute at IFFLA this year. Tabu's three-decade career spans Hindi-language Bollywood and regional-language cinema while her international credits include Mira Nair's The Namesake and Ang Lee's Life of Pi.

"With half of the festival’s 2019 lineup directed by female filmmakers, this couldn’t be a stronger celebration of women in Indian cinema," said IFFLA executive director Christina Marouda. Titles helmed by female directors include Anamika Haksar's Taking the Horse to Eat Jalebis and Sandhya Suri's short film, The Field, both of which bowed at Sundance.

The program also features Amazon's Photograph, which premiered at Sundance, from breakout director Ritesh Batra, known for The Lunchbox and Netflix's Robert Redford-Jane Fonda starrer Our Souls At Night.

While the festival's closing film is still to be announced, other titles include Ashish Pandey's Kashmir-set drama Nooreh, which won at Busan, Ronny Sen's directorial debut Cat Sticks, which screened at Slamdance, family drama Love Goes Through Your Mind, directed by UCLA alum Ronak Shah and Safdar Rahman's Chippa, which stars child actor Sunny Pawar, who featured in the Nicole Kidman-starrer Lion.

The festival's program also includes a TV-centric panel titled 'Breaking in Brown: Making it to Series in TV's Golden Age' highlighting the work of South Asian talent in mainstream U.S. television shows.

IFFLA runs April 11-14.