NEW YORK, May 28, 2012 /PRNewswire/ — Bornila Chatterjee’s Let’s Be Out, the Sun is Shining has won the 2012 Audience Choice Feature Film Award, sponsored by multi-platform South Asian entertainment service Mela, at the 12th annual New York Indian Film Festival (NYIFF). Chatterjee was presented with a certificate by Pooja Kohli (director of Content and Acquisitions at Mela) at the Closing Night Awards Ceremony that concluded the 5-day event presented by the Indo-American Arts Council, taking place from May 23-27th in Lower Manhattan.
The award served as a category independent of the traditional set of jury-selected Annual Awards at the long-running and celebrated festival. Audience members selected the winning film via a voting process, using ballots provided by Mela at each screening to rate the films according to their preference. All feature-length narratives were eligible for the award, with the exception of opening, closing, centerpiece and retrospective films.
Mela’s NYIFF Audience Choice Feature Film Award entails a $2000 cash prize to the filmmaker; worldwide distribution as part of the Mela Movies collection; and inclusion in relevant marketing initiatives by Mela.
The award was conceptualized as a result of Mela and NYIFF’s mutual commitment to bringing quality cinema to audiences worldwide and dedication to building a stronger distribution avenue for independent filmmakers from the Indian subcontinent. Prakash Bhalerao, CEO of Verismo Networks, expressed his enthusiasm at Mela’s sponsorship of the award: “Mela’s presence at NYIFF is an opportunity for us to further our aim to provide diaspora audiences with all kinds of cinema, from Bollywood blockbusters to festival favorites, in Hindi as well as regional languages.” NYIFF’s Artistic and Executive director Aroon Shivdasani shared Mr. Bhalerao’s sentiments, stating “our passionate mission to give filmmakers of the Indian subcontinent platforms to tell their stories is furthered by our partnership with Mela.”
Let’s Be Out, the Sun is Shining tells the story of Divya, a shy, romantic Indian-American receptionist who, upon rejection by charismatic but arrogant Brooklyn bartender Paddy, immerses herself in his world of struggling actors & musicians, leading to unlikely friendship and self-discovery.
An elated Chatterjee spoke with Mela post-Awards Ceremony: “This means so much to our entire team, and we are so grateful for the amazing audience who voted for our film. Thank you so much to Mela for this award; it’s very exciting to know that Let’s Be Out now has another distribution outlet.”