Guwahati, Nov 4: Hinting at a curb on freedom of expression in his country, Bangladeshi actor-director Noor Imran Mithu today rued that artists of the country have failed in protesting the injustices and excesses happening in front of their eyes.
“Freedom of expression is under threat everywhere. It is a global problem. In Bangladesh too, there are pressures from different quarters, it can be political or from some other source,” Mithu said, talking to UNI on the sidelines of the ongoing 3rd Guwahati International Film Festival (GIFF) here.
While maintaining that the ‘situation is better now’, he added that ‘artists still cannot portray the reality’ in all its shades. He cited the example of Iran where social injustices and censorship is allegedly rampant, but world class cinema is being produced, protraying the reality of the country.Mithu said, “The Iranian films show one or the other problems of the country. At any given point of time, 10 film-makers of Iran are in jail. But it has not stopped them from speaking out and bringing to the fore the wrongs in their country.” “But we have failed in doing it. Artists should be able to speak out against the injustices around them. They should have the courage to speak out, maintain their stand and give up their lives for it,” the young actor-director said.
“People are turning opportunistic, they are turning mute spectators to the wrongs happening around them. But artists should be reactive,” he added. Drawing from his own experience with his first feature film ‘Komola Rocket’ in 2018, which had earned him the best debut director award at the Jaffna International Cinema Festival, Mithu said, “My movie was seen by our (Bangladesh) prime minister Sheikh Hasina and was appreciated by her. The film shows the problems facing our country and some may say it even shows the country in a poor light at times. But these are the realities of our times, and our prime minister was receptive of it.”
The film, which will be screened at the GIFF tomorrow, revolves around a cloth merchant who sets fire to his own factory for claiming insurance. (UNI)