Free Spirit Film Festival is an annual event held in McLeod Ganj to promote the joy, beauty and power of cinema. Aimed at sharing beautiful stories, concerns, interests, and creativity, the festival honours and promotes independent filmmakers from around the world.
The festival will open with the Indian premiere of Plundering Tibet, a documentary highlighting the dire consequences of China's ruthless mining in Tibet. Closing the festival will be Umformung - The Transformation, a story of intense dimensions with two parallel stories: One, that of a Buddhist monk in a search for his inner truths, and the other is that of a female city builder whose belief in life is all about power, greed, and manipulation.
There will be thirteen film awards chosen by a grand jury and the Audience Award, decided by the filmgoers.
As part of the budding film culture in McLeod Ganj, the festival is independent and aims to give audiences exposure to different ideas, cultures, art, movements and activism from all over the world.
The festival was started by Lobsang Wangyal, a social entrepreneur, in 2004, showing a wide variety of film genres, including feature, short, documentary, music video, animation and experimental, encapsulating the free spirit nature of the festival. Wangyal is known for producing other popular events such as Miss Tibet Pageant, Miss Himalaya Pageant, and Tibetan Music Awards.
The festival could not have reached this milestone without the support and dedication of the staff members, volunteers, donors and filmmakers from around the world.
The festival will be held for five days, from 25 to 29 October, at the Tibetan Day School at Dolma Chowk, McLeod Ganj, from 5 pm onwards.