FilmKaravan to Release ‘AIDS Jaago’ with a ROCKIN’ Party!

If you have been keeping up with the ‘Woman About Town’ column on The Ajnabee, then this past summer you read up on the fabulous party that the ladies behind FilmKaravan threw for the DVD release of Nina Paley’s animated epic ‘Sita Sings the Blues’. Well, the wonderful duo responsible for that unforgettable soiree -- as well as the official launch of the Karavan Kollective -- are back and certainly poised to surpass the fun, food and wonderful star mingling of the previous events.

This coming Tuesday, November 10th, FilmKaravan will be releasing the Mira Nair produced ‘AIDS Jaago’, on DVD. ‘AIDS Jaago’ is a quartet of short films which quite simply explain the illness as well as highlight the stigma often associated with HIV, especially in countries where education of the masses is still a faraway, hard to achieve goal. By placing these individual films before the screenings of blockbusters in multiplexes throughout India and broadcasting them on Indian TV channels such as National Geographic, Ms. Nair began to create an awareness that she continues now in the US. We often look to India, the Middle East and Africa as places where AIDS education is lacking, but actually I am often surprised at the kind of ignorance about the disease that I personally encounter right here, in our good ol’ US of A! We may seem smart when we talk about condoms and safe sex but how true to our words are we really being when those lights go down?

‘AIDS Jaago’ consists of four short, yet momentous films by four well respected Indian filmmakers: Nair herself, Farhan Akhtar, Santosh Sivan and Vishal Bhardwaj. With such wonderful actors as Boman Irani, Siddharth, Irrfan Khan, Shabana Azmi and Prabhudeva, the films personally touched my heart. At different times, throughout the last couple of years, I have been able to watch one or two segments while traveling, or in festivals, or even snuck a view online somewhere. Each time, I notice a new nuance, discover a new gem and feel a different sensation. That to me is what a great film is all about, allowing the viewer to develop and grow along with its story.

But the party this coming Tuesday, at Madison Avenue eatery Pranna Restaurant and starting at 8 p.m., promises to be great fun right along with its somber and important message. Celebrities in attendance will include Mira Nair along with actor and activist Rahul Bose, Sanjay Suri -- a wonderful actor, AIDS activist and my personal favorite interview to date! -- as well as Shabana Azmi and Javed Akhtar and the actress of the moment Tannishtha Chatterjee. And of course, there are plenty of other names that are bound to drop by, if FilmKaravan’s past launches are any indication. I mean, just check out the guest list from their KaravanKollective party… Enough to make you book some tickets right this minute, ain’t it?!

SOOOO, what are you waiting for?? Click on this link and purchase your very inexpensive tickets -- $25 in advance, $30 at the door -- your passes to the chance to mingle with some great talents and celebrities… All the while supporting a wonderfully worthy cause.

Check out the ‘AIDS Jaago’ trailer below, for a teaser…

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