Home > 

Indian Indie Films Triumph at Cannes Amidst Financial Struggles Say Stars

As the nation revels in Payal Kapadia’s impressive win at the 2024 Cannes Film Festival, the conversation has steered towards the often-overlooked struggles faced by independent filmmakers. The spotlight has now shone brightly on the fact that these artists, despite their remarkable achievements, navigate a myriad of obstacles. Notably, actresses Tillotama Shome and Huma Qureshi have shed light on the systemic challenges and pressing need for institutional support in the industry.

Actress Huma Qureshi used her social media to vocalize the necessity for financial backing from major brands and corporations. She criticized the prevailing trend where enormous sums of money are spent on individuals who have no significant link to cinema. This remark came in the wake of Anasuya Sengupta’s historic win as the first Indian actor to receive the Best Actress award in the Un Certain Regard segment and Payal Kapadia’s ‘All We Imagine as Light’ securing the Grand Prix at the 77th Cannes Film Festival.

On Instagram, Huma Qureshi shared a poignant image of the ‘All We Imagine as Light’ team receiving the Grand Prix. “So proud of you all @payalkapadia @kantari_kanmani @divya_prabha @chhaya.kadam.75. Hope. There is hope,” she penned under the image. Her subsequent post emphasized the importance of supporting grassroots filmmaking, “Cannes Film Festival is a platform where Art is celebrated for Art’s sake… I really hope some of these brands/companies that spend hundreds of dollars sending people who have nothing to do with films instead now find a way to support small and independent films.”

Qureshi’s posts were not just about admiration but also a call to action, urging influential entities to redirect their investments towards nurturing homegrown talent and stories. “I really am so proud of all the incredible women who have brought home such glory! More power to them and to our homegrown storytellers,” she added, reinforcing her message of empowering independent filmmakers.

Join Get ₹99!


Diving deeper into the intricate challenges faced by these filmmakers, actress Tillotama Shome offered a heartfelt narrative on her own Instagram account. She illuminated the gritty realities behind the scenes – the financial scrambles and emotional tribulations that often go unnoticed by the broader public.

Shome wrote, “I wanted to put some flowers out today, to celebrate the women from my country at Cannes. How did they get there? Ask them and you will weep.” Her words spoke volumes about the monumental effort required for an Indian indie film, bereft of institutional and financial support, to reach such prestigious heights. The story she detailed was one of perseverance and dedication against staggering odds.

Elaborating on the financial hardships, she questioned, “How were the films funded? How difficult was it to complete the film on that budget? And how did the actors put together the money to fly to Cannes, so they could bring home the prize that we are so proud of?” Shome’s poignant remarks painted a vivid picture of the unseen labor and the herculean efforts required for success on such a premier global stage.

Her plea for more substantial support was resonant, “Let’s put some skin into this game if we are feeling so proud. Otherwise, it’s not pride, just shame for not believing in your own storytellers, until the world asks you to look at them.” This stark commentary highlighted how the nation’s pride in these achievements needs to translate into tangible support and belief in local talent. Shome concluded with a powerful analogy, “These women are filling the cracks and saving the building,” suggesting that it is the relentless spirit of these filmmakers that holds the fort sturdy, despite the overwhelming challenges.

Tillotama Shome’s insights added depth to the discourse initiated by Huma Qureshi. Both actresses, through their powerful testimonies, highlighted a pressing need for change. They argued for a more structured approach in recognizing and supporting independent filmmakers. Their narratives underline a crucial point: true recognition and support must begin at home, with concrete actions aiding those who create the stories that define and reflect the nation’s diverse cultural tapestry.

In celebrating the Cannes victories, Shome and Qureshi remind us that the journey to such accolades is seldom straightforward. It’s a path marred by financial strain, lack of institutional support, and countless personal sacrifices. As the nation venerates its Cannes winners, it must also reflect on the systemic changes needed to nurture and uplift its independent filmmakers, ensuring their struggles are not forgotten amidst the celebrations.