NIEPOKALANOW, Warsaw, Poland — Third Indian film selected to be screened at the final round in feature film category is also from Kerala entitled Ente Ettavum Priyappetta Teacherku (To my Beloved Teacher).
“Education is a matter of the heart,” says the priest-director, Salesian Father Jiji Kalavanal, insisting on the importance of what a teacher is than what he or she teaches.
“The 24-minute film was well accepted in the college both by professors and the examiner,” says Fr. Jiji has who scripted, edited and directed the film as his graduation movie for a Master`s degree in Film and Television at St. Joseph’s College of Communications, Changanacherry.
To My Beloved Teacher is a much acclaimed story of Teddy, a fifth grade student that his teacher just didn`t like very much. He was unpleasant, messy, and earned bad grades. A Teacher`s Day celebration and the events that followed change the life of the teacher and the student.
“It`s a story that will touch one`s heart and make one think,” says K. G. George, a leading film director in Kerala.
Mr. George praised the movie for its simplicity, well-designed shots and the characterisation. He was surprised that the movie took just two days (9a.m. to 6 p.m.) without any additional lights or any sort of professional support.
The 24-minute movie has surprisingly only 21 scenes of short duration which is very unnatural for a short fiction movie. Shot on location at Don Bosco Puthuppali, the cast included some of the staff and students of the school.
For instance, Father C. M Joseph proved his talent as an actor in handling the role of the principal while Father Kuriakose Shasthamkala and Father Sivy Koroth formed part of the production team.
A second film by Fr Jiji entitled, Yours My Life Entire is a 24-minute documentary on the life of a nun who works with the poor and downtrodden people. Though not in the competition, the selection committee has take it for additional promotion.
Fr. Jiji`s earlier short feature film entitled Seasons of Love (2008) based on teacher-pupil relation won awards at national and international film festivals (Warsaw & Rome).
Fr. Jiji Kalavanal SDB, of the province of Bangalore, bagged the FIRST RANK for Master`s Degree in Cinema and Television, Mahatma Gandhi University, Kottayam (Kerala). He was a student of St. Joseph`s College of Communications, Changanassery.
Fr. Jiji is an expert in Film Direction, Script Writing, Camera, Editing and related topics. He is well known for his innovative productions of short films and documentaries even as a student itself.
Debut director Salesian Fr Jiji Kalavanal of Bangalore province won the Signis Award for best short film at the Religion Today Film Festival held in Rome, 2008. The film Seasons of Love had won a special mention in the feature film category, at the 23rd International Catholic Film and Multimedia Festival Warsaw, in 2008.