Shirley Abraham, född i Indien, studerade vid Jamia Millia Islamia i New Delhi. The Cinema Travellers är hennes långfilmsdebut.
Amit Madheshiya, född 1982 i Indien, har studerat engelsk litteratur vid Hindu College i New Delhi. Han har prisats för sina fotografier. The Cinema Travellers är hans långfilmsdebut.
I came to love the movies because I was prohibited to watch them. There used to be a movie on television on Saturday night but the children were bundled into bed for the Sunday church service. I was scared to be on the wrong side of the angels when they separated the wicked from the just on Judgement Day. The first film I saw happened to be ‘The Angel’. I was watchful, covering the television screen with a dark cloth and peeping in, so the escaping light wouldn’t betray me. The film showed me the benign side of the angles that the Bible had warned me against. And it planted in me, a deep curiosity about how cinema can give form to the human imagination. I witnessed a most profound and beauteous form of it decades later, as I wound my way into the travelling cinemas.
Amit Madheshiya: One winter night, I sneaked out of my grandparent’s home in the village. They were screening a movie in the school’s courtyard to celebrate a wedding. I crawled inside the white wedding tent to find my friends, plumes of smoke, and a huge screen lit with images. In the morning, my grandmother found me sleeping, wrapped in the lose flaps of the tent. She pulled me out of the swathes of canvas and touched my forehead for signs of fever. I was fine and was punished for my indiscretion. All afternoon, I worked on compost being prepared to plant mango saplings. Since then, I have found the musty smell of the compost indelibly intertwined with my first memories of cinema, rooted deep in my grandmother’s mango orchard.
Decades later, sitting in a field, crouching by the beam of a cinema projector, I knew I was home.