Thiruvananthapuram: The 17th edition of the International Film Festival of Kerala began with the public screening of Alfred Hitchcock's silent movie 'The Ring,' and live orchestra by Jazz master Soweta Kinsch at Nishagandhi open air theater here today.
The eight-day festival 'IFFK 2012' will see screening of 198 films from 58 countries selected for various sections by an expert panel of the Kerala Chalachitra Academy.
Inaugurating the event, Chief Minister Oommen Chandy said that the government was committed to extend all support to cinema as it continues to be the greatest medium of entertainment for common people.
Chandy lighted the traditional lamp 'nilavilakku' marking the opening of the festival. He said government would soon finalise steps to set up a permanent film festival complex to conduct the annual festival, which stood out for its overwhelming participation of people from the state and outside.
Leading actor Mohanlal turned up as chief guest along with Australian film maker Paul Cox, who heads the jury, Chalachitra Academy chairman and noted director Priyadarshan and Union Minister Shashi Tharoor.
Actor and Sports Minister KB Ganesh Kumar, said over 7000 delegate passes had been issued for the latest edition of the festival, in which a wide range of films would be screened in various theaters in the city.