Film Education

“ATONEMENT” SHOWCASED IN “We Speak, Here” – an online film festival
Sowrik DattaFilmmaker

(FILM APPRECIATION Course January 2009 batch)

Sourik Datta September 28 at 7:41pm Report
Hi Ma’am…thought of sharing d following news:

‘The Atonement’ has been chosen to be showcased along with several other films from all over the world during the week of 27 September 2010 in the “UNDISCOVERED” section of “We Speak, Here” – an online film festival by Culture Unplugged.
Kindly follow d link during this week:

Watch free documentaries and short films online. – documentary films, Online Film Festival on Humanity and Consciousness
Article on Oorvazi Irani’s blog about the film

Media: The extensions of man
September 12, 2010, 8:22 am
Filed under: Film Musings | Tags: , , , , ,

Marshall McLuhan

Media: The extensions of man

During the mechanical ages we had extended our bodies in space. Today, after more than a century of electric technology, we have extended our central nervous system itself in a global embrace, abolishing both space and time as far as our planet is concerned.

“Understanding Media” By Marshal McLuhan

Belonging to the Electronic Age/Digital Age today and come a long way from the agrarian, industrial societies, how has it affected us as an audience and artist/filmmaker. How do we perceive the world, how do we receive information and how do we process it.
If media is an extension of our senses and therefore of our perceiving the world how has the process of perception changed for the artist/filmmaker today.
If the artist is aware that she/he perceives the world in a different way and is impacted by media in that process of perception, the message(content) in regards to tv and cinema by a sensitive artist will also reflect that change.
Thus ‘The Medium is the Message’ but the ‘Message is also as important as the Medium’ as the message can hold a mirror to the Medium.
Oorvazi Irani
“The Medium is the Message”

(By Dr. Eric McLuhan,

Each medium, independent of the content it mediates, has its own intrinsic effects which are its unique message.

The message of any medium or technology is the change of scale or pace or pattern that it introduces into human affairs. The railway did not introduce movement or transportation or wheel or road into human society, but it accelerated and enlarged the scale of previous human functions, creating totally new kinds of cities and new kinds of work and leisure. This happened whether the railway functioned in a tropical or northern environment, and is quite independent of the freight or content of the railway medium. (Understanding Media, N. Y., 1964, p. 8)

What McLuhan writes about the railroad applies with equal validity to the media of print, television, computers and now the Internet. “The medium is the message” because it is the “medium that shapes and controls the scale and form of human association and action.” (p. 9)


Film Appreciation Course in Mumbai

Oorvazi Irani’s Course Reviewed by RASIK TIRODKAR

on the “Passion for Cinema” website

  1. Rasik



    It being on weekends is a boon for those who work or are busy for some reason throughout the week.

    I have attended this course and I can say I was benefited immensely. Before this course my interest, knowledge and understanding of cinema was pretty limited. Back then, PFC was practically the only thing that shaped my interest in cinema. This course gave me a sense of confidence on cinema as a subject. It widened my horizons of cinema.

    Another interesting thing, which isn’t mentioned in the links above, is that she had included in the course the Chekov Acting technique. Nobody in the whole of India tells you about this technique.
    Here’s more about the Chekov Acting technique-

    The best part about the course is Oorvazi Irani herself. You will find in her a teacher which you always wished you had in school. Friendly, patient and confident. Her classes(i.e. if i can call them that) are not ‘classes’ that we usually went to in schools, colleges etc. They are highly interactive sessions at the end of which you don’t feel tired but enriched. The batch that i attended got so attached with her that we even went for a trek together with Ms.Irani.

    Thus, it is needless to say that the course is well worth its time and money.

    Posted 2 hours ago


  1. Rasik



    A film appreciation course will be conducted by Oorvazi Irani, a FTII approved film appreciation teacher, in Mumbai, for 3 weekends from 25th September onwards. As I have attended the course I can personally vouch for it.

    Here’s the link to know what will be covered under the course and the contact details.

    Here’s Oorvazi Irani’s blog and her profile.

    This is a wonderful PFC post by Indu Raman on the course which generated a very interesting discussion as well.

    Any queries can be discussed here or on the first 2 links or on the contact details provided in those links.

    Posted 3 hours ago
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Behind the scenes: “Clap Trap” Part 5 : SORAB IRANI

Behind the scenes: “Clap Trap” Part 5

By Sorab Irani – Chairman/Managing Director, SBI Impresario Pvt. Ltd.

The film was really created on the editing table. The film was commissioned by Farrukh Dhondy of Channel Four as a 25 minutes documentary. When we showed him the rough cut which was about 45 minutes he was so impressed that he immediately decided that it should be a 52 minuter. This involved more filming and a complete reedit.

There were many interesting episodes while filming.

Once while we were in the Men’s Extras association office a big male drunk extra attacked us, of course Navroze kept the camera rolling as long as he could, we were rescued in the nick of time by the other assembled extras.

On another occasion when we were filming at the Women’s Extras Associations office a big fight broke out among one group of ladies against the others – the dispute was that the association was making secrete deals outside the association with some select lady members, we caught the entire fight live and it turned out to be great observational footage. Later there was a big hue and cry about this and the Women’s Extras Association complained to my Producers Association saying it wanted this documentary stopped because it would show the ladies in a bad light. A compromise was reached that we would show them the completed film for their informal approval and a sizeable donation was made so that we could carry on with the making of the film.

It was just after the infamous communal riots in Bombay and one night we were all hauled off to the police station by jumpy cops as we were thought to be suspicious characters while we were filming at the Dadar flower market at 3 am in the morning.

Again while we were filming at Pummi’s home her drunk husband arrived and started a big fight. The police arrived and sorted this one out seeing that the man was very drunk, we were asked to press charges but refrained from doing so as he would pile more misery on Pummi later.

Local goons extracted money from us.

Packs of menacing stray dogs chased us at night while filming in certain localities, but such was the times and such was our brief.

The most painful part was the edit. Firstly we had so much footage, our filming ratio was generous but that meant syncing hours of footage. We could not use the traditional clap so Navroze would just clap his hand in front of the running camera or one of his assistant or one of us would perform the customary duty so that we could sync the footage later.

As all the exposed cans were printed the NG takes had to be synced and then removed. After that was done the footage had to be viewed and a rough structure had to be evolved. Deepak Saigal our editor suggested that we do a paper edit of sorts so that we can all think and agree on a sort of rough first assembly. This exercise meant that edge numbers of each shot had to be written in a log with reference to the exposed can numbers a mighty task in itself owing to the huge amount of footage. Battles royal ensured between the director and the editor as the director would come up with a fresh idea and completely change what was done the previous day. There was no Avid machine or any computer assistance, it all had to be done manually. Shots found from cans and shots put back in cans, doing this for months can get on your nerves. The editor had two assistants only for this job. To add to this there was a fire and we had to shift to another editing room, that was a night mare because if shots got lost we had to get them printed again from the lab only with the help of exposed can numbers whose reference we got from the continuity sheets of the filming. The negative dare not be handled in those days, remember we were 16mmwalls and not 35mm mainstream bollywood.

The story carries on in my next post