Sister South Asian Film Festivals DFW SAFF and NYC SAFF are about to embark on a new DIGITAL chapter of their six-year combined journey. They proudly co-present ECSA, Escapist Cinema of South Asia, a seven-week, online series (May 16th to June 27th) that will live stream a new film(s) every Saturday night (7 to 10 p.m. CDT) to entertain, engage and educate cinephiles who are observing shelter-in-place anywhere in the U.S. during the pandemic.
ECSA will showcase premieres of shorts, documentaries and feature films curated around a specific theme over the seven-week period. Each live stream will be followed by a Zoom post-screening Q&A with actors and directors; audience members can engage by asking questions through live chat. Screenings will cost the general public $6 per block of programming (to commemorate six years of festival production). Audience members can log in to www.onlinefest.us from anywhere in the country (or the world for certain screenings), create an account, pay for their screenings in advance and receive reminders leading up the live event(s).
WATCH A FILM, SAVE A LIFE: For every person who registers, the festival will donate a microfiber face mask to Texas and NYC hospitals in need. The goal is to collect 25,000 masks over the seven weeks and help keep our medical workers safe on the front lines. The more people who watch, the more people we will be able to protect, so please HELP US spread the word far & wide to your friends and family members!
The series will kick off on Saturday, May 16th at 7 p.m. CDT with our song and dance programming, including the short dance film TINA followed by the Gujarati film HELLARO (watch trailer HERE), which won TWO National Awards in 2019 for Best Feature & Best Ensemble Cast. The rest of the programming for May is available HERE.
MAY HIGHLIGHTS INCLUDE:
*May 16th – Grammy-nominated singer/songwriter Falu Shah performs a Gujarati song, after the screening of National Award-winning film HELLARO
*May 23rd – First South African film in SAFF festival history (part of Diaspora Programming), featuring veteran Indian actor Lillete Dubey
*May 30th – Priya Arora, editor of The New York Times & host of Queering Desi podcast, moderates post-screening Q&A for our LGBTQIA+ programming
*Programming for June is still in the works and will be announced shortly at www.onlinefest.us, as well as on the festivals’ websites and social media.