Ivan Ayr’s debut feature Soni to make its World Premiere at the prestigious 75th Venice International Film Festival in Orizzonti Competition


~ Ivan Ayr’s Soni had won the Facebook Award for Best ‘Work-In-Progress’ Project and Prasad DI Award for the Best Film In ‘Film Bazaar Recommends’ section at NFDC Film Bazaar 2017 ~

~ Soni is produced by Kimsi Singh and Kartikeya Narayan Singh whose previous credits include the 2015 Cannes Un Certain Regard Selection Chauthi Koot ~

Goa khabar: Ivan Ayr’s debut feature as a writer-director, SONI will make its World Premiere at the prestigious 75th Venice International Film Festival in Orizzonti Competition. It is the only Indian feature to be officially selected at the festival, which will be held from 29th August to 8th September 2018.

The film is about Soni, a young and fiery policewoman in Delhi and Kalpana, her superintendent who are dealing with a growing crisis of violent crimes against women. Their mission and alliance are further strained by complications arising in Soni’s personal and professional life.

Soni was a part of the ‘Work In Progress’ section at the NFDC Film Bazaar 2017 where it had won two awards, the Facebook Award for Best ‘Work-In-Progress’ Project and Prasad DI Award for the Best Film in the ‘Film Bazaar Recommends’ section.

It was among the 5 films to be selected for the ‘Work in Progress’ Lab at NFDC Film Bazaar 2017 for post-production support where it was mentored by the renowned French editor Jacques Comets (Wajib – Locarno 2017 Don Quixote Award Winner) and veteran Festival Director Marco Mueller (Venice Film Festival and International Film Festival of Rome).

Soni stars newcomers, Geetika Vidya Ohlyan and Saloni Batra in the lead roles. Ivan Ayr has also written the screenplay of the film (along with Kislay) and edited it.

Soni is produced by Kimsi Singh (maiden venture as a producer) under her banner Jabberwockee Films and Kartikeya Narayan Singh whose previous credits include director Gurvinder Singh’s Anhey Ghorey Da Daan (Alms For A Blind Horse) and Chauthi Koot (The Fourth Direction) which premiered at Venice International Film Festival 2012 and the prestigious Un Certain Regard section at Cannes 2015 respectively.

Writer-director, Ivan Ayr whose short film, Quest For A Different Outcome, won Best Film award at the 2015 San Jose Short Film Festival was extremely excited about his debut feature, Soni, getting selected for the Orizzonti section at the 75th Venice International Film Festival 2018. He says, “I’m absolutely thrilled and honored to have received this invitation. It is truly a fulfilling culmination to a long journey, being offered this prestigious platform. I want to thank and congratulate the entire team of Soni for their hard work and commitment, and a sincere thanks to Venice for bestowing this beautiful honor on our film.”

Equally elated with the announcement the debutant producer, Kimsi says, “Soni marks my first venture as a producer and honestly I don’t think I could have begun my journey on a better note.  The awards bestowed on it at IFFI Film Bazaar 2017 and the selection at Venice 2018 have reinstated the faith and conviction we have invested in the film.

Producer Kartikeya Singh added, “With the Orizzonti selection at Venice, Soni’s journey has begun on a great note and I am extremely confident that the film will be appreciated both internationally and in India, given the relevant social theme it engages with. I have always passionately championed the cause of cinema which manifests a personal unique voice. Ivan Ayr is a bright young talent and one such voice. The recognition that Soni is receiving is extremely satisfying and humbling for me as a Producer.”

About The Film:

Soni, a young policewoman in Delhi, and her superintendent, Kalpana, have collectively taken on a growing crisis of violent crimes against women. However, their alliance suffers a major setback when Soni is transferred out for alleged misconduct on duty. Soni’s professional life is further strained by certain developments in her personal life, when she is forced to deal with the sudden arrival of her estranged husband.

About The Director:

Ivan Ayr grew up in multiple cities across northern India. He moved to the United States for his postgraduate studies. After receiving a degree in Electrical Engineering, he studied English literature at Cañada College in Redwood City, California and Screenwriting & Film direction at San Francisco Film Society, where he wrote and directed his first short film Lost And Found as a eulogy to his stolen bicycle. Ivan’s second short film won Best Film at San Jose International Short Film Festival. Soni is Ivan’s feature directorial debut. It was one of the 5 films selected by India’s National Film Development Corporation (A Govt. body), to be part of the prestigious ‘Work in Progress’ Lab at Film Bazaar in November 2017 for post-production support, where it was mentored by French editor Jacques Comets and veteran festival director Marco Mueller. The film became an official selection at 75th Mostra Internazionale d’Arte Cinematografica – Venice Film Festival, 2018.

About Producers:

Kimsi Singh is an independent producer. After having moved to the United States in 2006 for her graduate studies, she got involved in her University’s campus filmmaking scene. She co-wrote and produced short films with student filmmakers, effectively managing budgets and helping out with schedules, fundraising and permissions. She and Ivan Ayr (Director) have collaborated on three short films in the past. She returned to India to start her own production banner, Jabberwockee Talkies, with Soni becoming its first production. Kimsi used private equity to fund the entire film.

Kartikeya Narayan Singh is an independent producer with a deep interest in producing works from the emerging and alternative voices of Indian cinema. His films Alms For A  Blind Horse directed by Gurvinder Singh, premiered at 2012 Venice Film Festival, The Seventh Walk directed by Amit Dutta, premiered at 2013 Rome International Film festival. The Fourth Direction (Un Certain Regard, 2015) is an international co-production winning various accolades in leading festivals including the Grand Prix at the Belgrade Auteur Film Festival; the Silver Screen Award for Best Asian film at Singapore and the Golden Gateway at Mumbai Film Festival.