As India celebrates 75 years of independence, Netflix and the country’s Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, have partnered to honor real-life stories of extraordinary women through a series of short videos titled “Azadi Ki Amrit Kahaniyan.” The initiative was launched on Tuesday in the presence of Anurag Thakur, India’s Minister of Information and Broadcasting.
Bela Bajaria, global head of TV, Netflix, who was also present at the event, said: “Great stories can come from anywhere and are ever so inspiring when they are about people who rise against the odds. In partnership with the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, ‘Azadi Ki Amrit Kahaniyan’ focuses on celebrating remarkable individuals and their stories that can inspire people in India and around the world.”
Narrated by acclaimed actor Neena Gupta (Badhaai Ho”), the short videos capture the journey of these individuals and how they broke the glass ceiling in their respective fields, ranging from science to sports. They feature Harshini Kanheker, India’s first female firefighter; Basanti Devi, environmentalist and protector of the Kosi river ecosystem; vaccination champion Poonam Nautiyal; Tessy Thomas, the first-ever woman scientist to head a missile project in India; Anshu Jamsenpa, the first woman in the world to summit Mount Everest twice in five days; Aarohi Pandit, the first woman pilot to cross the Atlantic Ocean and the Pacific Ocean solo in a light-sport aircraft; and Tanvi Jagadish, India’s first competitive woman stand-up paddleboarder.
The videos are now available on the Ministry’s social media platforms and Indian state broadcaster Doordarshan.
Sandra Ng has been named as the filmmaker in focus this year at the re-arranged Hong Kong International Film Festival. The festival’s executive director, Albert Lee lauded Ng’s “chameleon-like ability to deliver memorable performances across all genres and give layered nuances and diversity to each challenging role that reflects the dynamism of modern women.” She has also evolved from acting to directing and producing. The festival will host an in-conversation event with Ng and play a retrospective of ten of her films, including: “The Inspector Wears Skirts,” “Golden Chicken” and “Echoes of the Rainbow.” Shifted from its usual March-April slot, the HKIFF will now run Aug. 15-31, 2022. – Patrick Frater
After NBC in the U.S. and MBC in the Middle East, “Million Dollar Island,” a format created by John de Mol‘s Talpa Concepts and Monday Media, is now headed for Australia where it has been commissioned by Seven and will be produced by Eureka Productions and will air in 2023. The show is a social experiment where 100 people try to stay on a remote desert island for two months for a chance at winning $1 million. Each contestant starts the adventure with a bracelet worth $10,000 dollars. While they’re on the island, contestants can gain and lose bracelets by competing in various games. The show, which is distributed by Talpa Distribution, was launched in the Netherlands on SBS6, in March. Amazon Prime Video have a day-and-date SVOD second window.