Filmmaker Gitanjali Rao's animated feature Bombay Rose to premiere at the Venice Critic Week

Gitanjali Rao's animated feature Bombay Rose is set to be the opening film of Critic's Week at The Venice International Film Festival

Sharmistha Ghosal Published :  20th July 2019 12:00 AM   |   Published :   |  20th July 2019 12:00 AM

Gitanjali Rao's Bombay Rose

Gitanjali Rao an acclaimed animated short filmmaker, whose film Printed Rainbow won three awards at the Cannes Critic’s Week 2006 and was shortlisted for the Oscars in 2008, has made a full-length animated feature Bombay Rose, which is all set have a world premiere as the opening film of Critic’s Week at The Venice International Film Festival on August 29. It’s the first-ever Indian animated film to be selected to open the Venice Critic week.

Filmmaker and actor Gitanjali Rao

“I have always wanted to paint stories about people who live and love in the streets of Bombay, never become success stories, yet their struggle for survival makes heroes out of them. It took me six years to share the stories of these unsung heroes and heroines.  My hand-painted short films have travelled the globe from Cannes to Kanpur. That made me confident that my first feature film, Bombay Rose can connect with people around the world,” says Gitanjali, who played the stoic role of the mother in Shoojit Sircar’s acclaimed film, October.

A scene from Rao's Bombay Rose


Rao's five animated short films including Blue, Orange, Printed Rainbow, Chai and True Love Story have been showcased in the international art biennales in India, Poland and the US. Painted frame by frame, her films depict urban reality in a documentary style where the intricate dream worlds are inspired by the varied Indian folk-art styles.  

Gitanjali Rao

Her debut feature film Bombay Rose tells the story of a flower seller who has to make the choice between protecting her family or succumbing to love. Set in the streets of Mumbai, this film traverses the realms of real-life and fantasy from real life to fantasy and creates a magic realism complete with the much-loved Bollywood songs from the cinema halls. "Bombay Rose chronicles the travails and dilemmas of the migrant population in Mumbai in search of a little bliss in the fast-paced city," she adds. 

The film has been produced by Anand Mahindra and Rohit Khattar of Cinestaan Film Company. “It’s a privilege to work with Gitanjali over the last two years to bring this piece of beautiful cinema to life. We plan to take this film to other international festivals too,” says Rohit Khattar, chairman of Cinestaan Film Company.