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January 19th, 2011


Featuring Sundance Institute|Mahindra Global Filmmaking Award and Mumbai Mantra|Sundance Institute Screenwriters Lab


PARK CITY, UT -- Sundance Institute and Mahindra Group today announced a multifaceted agreement that showcases the commitment to and support of independent cinema around the world both by the Mahindra Group, one of the largest companies in India known throughout the world for its commitment to excellence and to social responsibility, and of the nonprofit Sundance Institute, one of the world’s leading cultural organizations

The collaboration allows for the establishment of the Mumbai Mantra|Sundance Institute Screenwriters Lab which shall become an annual event in India, and the Sundance Institute|Mahindra Global Filmmaking Award to be awarded annually at the Sundance Film Festival.

Said Anand Mahindra, Vice Chairman and Managing Director of Mahindra Group, “Our entry into Media and Entertainment is positioned to create a rich resource for Independent Filmmakers and to encourage original storytelling from all parts of the world in line with the Mahindra Group’s global foot print. The first step in this direction is the collaboration with the Sundance Institute which three decades ago heralded a unique nurturing spirit for Independent Cinema in America. Our intention is to nurture as well as hone the talents of an exciting new generation of Indian filmmakers. The guidance and knowhow of Sundance shall be extremely valuable to us in our initiatives.”

Said Robert Redford, President and Founder of Sundance Institute, “The creativity, ingenuity and corporate responsibility of the Mahindra Group is well known the world over. I want to commend Mahindra’s dedication to innovative corporate citizenship and to express my genuine enthusiasm for the work ahead. For Sundance Institute, this initiative represents our commitment to cultural exchange and allows us to extend our support of international filmmakers to a next generation of film artists emerging from India.

"Deepening our international work is a real priority for the Institute, because we believe the community of independent artists truly is global, “said Keri Putnam, Executive Director, Sundance Institute.. “Mahindra shares our commitment to fostering new voices and creativity, and to bring Sundance Institute to India is an especially exciting collaboration in a region long of interest to us."

Said Rohit Khattar, Director, Mumbai Mantra, “We have been evaluating various initiatives which shall not merely enable the company to revitalize its strategy in media & entertainment, but in keeping with the Group's values, also help in giving back to the film industry. With the Sundance partnership, we shall be able to recognise, nurture and hone incredible talent in India and across the world. We are at an exciting storytelling stage in the history of the film industry in both India and internationally and are constantly evaluating very interesting scripts. This collaboration and exchange of know-how shall raise the bar further.”  

Under the aegis of the ‘Sundance Institute |Mahindra Global Filmmaking Award’, four visionary filmmakers from around the world will receive a grant, attendance at the Sundance Film Festival for targeted industry meetings, mentoring from Institute staff and creative advisors, participation in a Feature Film Program Lab, and year-round support. This initiative  will extend over a three-year period, benefiting 12 awardees. Beginning in 2012, one out of the four directors will be an Indian – a commitment to fulfill Mahindra’s vision to champion a new generation of Indian filmmakers. Recipients of the 2011 Sundance Institute |Mahindra Global Film Making Award will be announced January 25.

Scheduled for Spring 2012, the inaugural Mumbai Mantra|Sundance Institute Screenwriters Lab will provide an opportunity for six-to-eight filmmakers from India to develop their works under the guidance of accomplished Creative Advisors in an environment that encourages storytelling at the highest level.  Explained Michelle Satter, Director of the Sundance Institute Feature Film Program, “This Screenwriters Lab is a natural extension of our international work in support of emerging artists and independent voice. Over the years, the Feature Film Program has partnered with leading film organizations in Latin America, Europe and the Middle East to create Labs for screenwriters with great success.”

The Mumbai Mantra Sundance Institute Screenwriting Lab March 2012 is inviting applications on www.mumbaimantra.com as part of its Open Submission Process.

About Sundance Institute
Sundance Institute is a global nonprofit organization founded by Robert Redford in 1981. Through its artistic development programs for directors, screenwriters, producers, composers and playwrights, the Institute seeks to discover and support independent film and theatre artists from the United States and around the world, and to introduce audiences to their new work. The Institute promotes independent storytelling to inform, inspire, and unite diverse populations around the globe. Internationally recognized for its annual Sundance Film Festival, Sundance Institute has nurtured such projects as Born into Brothels, Trouble the Water, Son of Babylon, Amreeka, Sin Nombre, An Inconvenient Truth, Spring Awakening, Light in the Piazza and Angels in America.  www.sundance.org

About Mahindra
The Mahindra Group focuses on enabling people to rise. Mahindra operates in the key industries that drive economic growth, enjoying a leadership position in tractors, utility vehicles, information technology and vacation ownership. Mahindra has a presence in the automotive industry, agribusiness, aerospace, components, consulting services, defence, energy, financial services, industrial equipment, logistics, real estate, retail, steel and two wheelers.

A USD 15.4 billion multinational group based in Mumbai, India, Mahindra employs more than 144,000 people in over 100 countries.

In 2011, Mahindra featured on the Forbes Global 2000 list, a listing of the biggest and most powerful listed companies in the world. Dun & Bradstreet also ranked Mahindra at No. 1 in the automobile sector in its list of India’s Top 500 Companies. In 2010, Mahindra featured in the Credit Suisse Great Brands of Tomorrow. In 2011, Mahindra acquired a majority stake in Korea’s SsangYong Motor Company.

To encourage and support the young and the unknown and to give back to the communities it operates in has been the core of the Mahindra Group’s involvement in art and culture. www.mahindra.com ; www.mumbaimantra.com