An FTII alumni and national award winning actress, writer, and director Bijaya Jena launched her latest directorial feature film titled DANA PANI (THE SURVIVOR) in the just concluded 69th Cannes International Film Festival. The Indo-French co-production will have as co-producer the well-known French producer of Iranian origin Morteza Mohammadi, whose film 13 won awards at Sundance and Venice.
While making the announcement in the India Pavilion at Cannes, Bijaya Jena informed the gathering that the film is a historical, set in Odisha of 1942 and is based on a novel written by the late Gopinath Mohanthy, the well-known Gyanpeeth Award winning Odiya writer. The novel is about the conflict of western culture and traditional Indian values.
Bijaya Jena is a screenplay writer, actor, producer, and director. She is a celebrated actress from Odissa and the winner of the State Award for Best Actress. She has also acted in Ismail Merchant's British Film THE DECEIVERS.
She has been writing columns about cinema for leading magazines of the world and has been on the jury of the national film awards, Indian Panorama, and various film festivals in India and abroad. She has won the Filmfare award for lifetime dedication to Odiya cinema. She has served as a member of the Governing Council of FTII, Pune, as well.
She has recently done a cameo as herself in a film titled DESIRE that's based on a quadriplegic person's life. The film also stars Preeti Jhangiani and Aryan Vaid and is directed by Avinash Nanda and produced by Rajinder Singh.
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