Goa ready for first soccer film fest at IFFI

Panaji: A football stadium here that ran into ruins almost a decade ago, will come back to life with a Soccer film festival, as part of the 42nd edition of IFFI, beginning on November 23.

The Campal Football Grounds will stage the `Soccer in Cinema` section for seven days, screening one film a day, during the ten-day film extravagnza. The Football films section, perhaps a first in the country, will open on November 24, a day after the International Film Festival kicks off here.

Former Indian football team captain Baichung Bhutia will be present at the football films opening. The football ground, currently in ruins, was formerly named after first Goa Chief Minister Dayanand Bandodkar. The state authorities now are aiming to rebuilt this stadium located on Mandovi river.

The films, which will be screened in the football section come from Brazil, Argentina, Germany, Italy, France and South Africa, which hosted the World Cup last year. Brazil is the host of the next World Cup in 2014. The football films section of IFFI is aimed at connecting with the people of Goa, who are famous for their love for football," says Faizal Khan, a Delhi-based journalist, who has curated the package with Mumbai-based artist Riyas Komu.

The opening film of the football package will be a South Korean entry, `A Barefoot Dream`, the real life story of South Korean coach Kim Sin-Hwan, known as East Timor`s Guus Hiddink. Hiddink is a former Dutch and Chelsea coach. The film was an entry for the Best Foreign Language film at the Oscar awards this year.