New York, NY (PRWEB) November 01, 2012
To celebrate and commemorate Sikh art, culture, leadership, and film, The Sikh Art & Film Foundation (SAFF) proudly presents its 9th annual Sikh International Film Festival (SIFF) on Saturday, November 3, 2012 at the Asia Society and Museum (725 Park Avenue at 70th St.) in New York. The Sikh Art & Film Foundation has screened over 125 short films and documentaries since 2004, to create awareness and pride in the diversity, culture and history of the Sikhs.
The Sikh International Film Festival will feature fourteen groundbreaking films which share the message of culture, values, self-esteem and struggle of contemporary Sikhs from across the globe, from both established and emerging filmmakers. The event will culminate with an awards ceremony where winning films in the category of Best Short Film and Best Documentary will be recognized with a cash prize, and each film participating receives a screening fee. Since its inception, the Sikh Art & Film Foundation has invested in films to preserve the Sikh heritage and awarded fees, cash prizes in excess of $250,000.
The event will also premiere “Be Proud” a multi-million dollar public service announcement campaign, created by Founder & CEO of RadiumOne, Gurbaksh Chahal. The Be Proud campaign, created in the wake of the tragic Gurudwara shootings of six innocent Sikhs in Wisconsin in August, will begin airing nationwide in November 2012, bringing its anti-hate, pro-unity message to Americans from all walks of life. The campaign, which is backed by renowned figures such as Deepak Chopra, Ben Kingsley, Lisa Ray, Jay Sean, and Gurinder Chadha, is about eliminating hate with the “unifying truth that we are all a little different and we should be proud of what makes us unique,” according to Mr. Gurbaksh Chahal, creator of the campaign.
The films making their World Premiere at SIFF 2012 include: Oak Creek: In Memoriam, from award-winning filmmaker Valarie Kaur and Sharat Raju, a short documentary commemorating the tragic shootings at Oak Creek; Injustice 1984, a film by Jarnail Singh which uncovers ugly truths behind the 1984 massacre from one family’s perspective; The Volunteers, British director Mark Hammett’s short feature about a young nursing home volunteer learning about Sikhs during World War II and the Burmese War and Five Folds, Satdeep Singh’s father-son drama. U.S. Premiere includes: Hola! The Mighty Colors, filmmaker Teena Kaur’s story about the Sikh celebration.
Since 2007, the Foundation has also honored those individuals who have helped elevate the Sikhi experience, via the annual Sikh Heritage Awards for Leadership, Vision and the Arts. Some of the past honorees include luminaries such as noted filmmaker Gurinder Chadha (Bend It Like Beckham), Ajay Banga (President & CEO, MasterCard Worldwide), Shelley & Donald Rubin (Co-Founders - Rubin Museum of Art), Analjit Singh (Founder & Chairman - Max India Group of Companies) and Shonali Bose (Writer, Director and Producer and Co-Creator of the film "Amu”).
In 2011, SAFF also introduced its annual Sikh Leadership Summit as a premier leadership development and networking event for our next generation of leaders to Engage. Enrich. Empower. It is designed to instill pride in the diversity, culture and history of the Sikhs, as well raise the awareness of the contributions of the diaspora via panel discussions featuring leaders from across disciplines.
The Sikh Art & Film Foundation has been instrumental in building bridges with other communities and faiths to remove any misconceptions about Sikhs and our identity. In 2012, SAFF hosted over 250 people at an event in Long Island, NY in conjunction with the Jewish Community Relations Council of Long Island to help build community bridges and understand more about Judaism and Sikhism and explore areas for further collaboration.
For more information on the Sikh Art & Film Foundation and learn how you can get involved to help preserve the Sikh heritage, please visit http://www.sikharts.com.