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MAMI Showcases 5 Shorts Filmed On iPhone; Selected By Vishal Bharadwaj-Led Jury

From the golden sands of Jaisalmer to the peaks of Kashmir, Apple on Friday showcased five talented independent filmmakers in India who created short films on the iPhone 15 Pro Max device.

19 Apr 2024

From the golden sands of Jaisalmer to the peaks of Kashmir, Apple on Friday showcased five talented independent filmmakers in India who created short films on the iPhone 15 Pro Max device.

The five emerging filmmakers that were selected by the Mumbai Academy of Moving Image (MAMI) to create short films for the ‘2024 MAMI Select-Filmed on iPhone’ programme, were mentored by filmmaker Vishal Bhardwaj, alongside fellow industry icons Vikramaditya Motwane and Rohan Sippy.

The filmmakers — Saurav Rai, Archana Atul Phadke, Faraz Ali, Saumyananda Sahi and Prateek Vats — are reimagining traditional cinematic conventions by shooting on iPhone 15 Pro Max, said the company.

All five of their short films were premiered on the MAMI YouTube channel on Friday.

“Our aim is to create an ecosystem that facilitates emerging filmmakers by creating opportunities that help them do new work and showcase it to a larger audience,” said Anupama Chopra, director of the MAMI Mumbai Film Festival.

Each filmmaker also used MacBook Pro with the M3 Max chip, allowing them to edit in even the most remote locations, said Apple.

‘Gudh' (Nest) — Rai’s debut film that was an official selection at the 69th Cannes Film Festival in 2016 — was inspired by his own childhood memories.

His new film, ‘Crossing Borders’, is no exception which tells the story of a woman who smuggles goods, like saris and umbrellas, across the Indo-Nepalese border to make ends meet.

Having used Apple products for a long time, Rai said iPhone 15 Pro Max is made for filmmakers.

“Shooting like this gives you a beautiful depth of field that you can control either in post or on the iPhone itself,” he explained.

For her short film, Phadke found aural inspiration in the rhythmic hum of the windmills outside Jaisalmer.

Titled ‘Mirage’, the film is based on a young boy who spends all his time on his iPhone, only to lose it — and himself — in the desert.

“My films always start with music or sounds,” said the National Award winner. “The visuals come later.”

Filmmaker Faraz Ali's short film, titled ‘Obur’ (Cloud), follows a teenage boy who loses the memories of his ailing mother. The memories were on his iPhone, which he pawns off to a pharmacist in exchange for his mother’s medical aid.

Ali said that iPhone 15 Pro Max let him go where filmmakers with bigger cameras simply cannot — like the snowy white peaks of Kashmir, where colour is king.

Sahi’s short film ‘A New Life’ follows a migrant factory worker who leaves behind his pregnant wife in search of better job opportunities.

Shot in Kolkata and Bengaluru, it examines tropes of fatherhood and long-distance relationships.

The short film by Vats is inspired by Anton Chekhov’s short story ‘The Death of a Government Clerk’.

Titled ‘Jal Tu Jalal Tu’ (You Are Water, You Are the All-Powerful), it captures the anxiety of a factory worker who accidentally offends his employer. The film delves into power dynamics and social hierarchies in a blue-collar environment.

Set in a real garment factory in Sonipat, the film is “a riot of colours that iPhone 15 Pro Max captures perfectly,” said Vats.

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