Thiruvananthapuram: The 18th edition of the International Film Festival of Kerala got underway at 11 venues here Friday with the official inauguration slated for the evening, when Israeli filmmaker Amos Gitai's "Ana Arabia" will be screened.
The state-owned Kerala State Chalachitra Academy has organised the event, which has seen the biggest participation of more than 9,000 delegates. The festival, during which 217 films from 64 countries will be screened, will end next Friday.
The highlight of the event is a competition section for 14 films from Asia, Africa, and Latin America that will vie for the Golden Crow Pheasant Award that carries a cash prize of Rs.15 lakh ($30,000) to be shared by the director and the producer.
Veteran Mexican film personality Arturo Ripstein is the jury chairman. Film actress Gowthami is also in the jury.
With Chief Minister Oommen Chandy himself overseeing the conduct of the event, the state government has earmarked Rs.2.50 crore for the festival.