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Documentary ‘Sab Rab De Bande’, Malayalam Film ‘Chuzhal’ among Indian Winners of the Cannes World Film Festival Awards for July 2021

The Cannes World Film Festival on Monday announced the winners for its monthly competition for July 2021 in various categories and six Indian films won these awards, including the documentary Sab Rab De Bande and the Malayalam mystery thriller Chuzhal.


The awards were announced in a wide range of categories, including feature films, experimental films, short films, documentaries, TV/web series, music videos, commercials, animations, and many more.

The Cannes World Film Festival is conducted in association with FilmFreeway and IMDb. They run a monthly and annual competition with an aim to “unearth rare gems and highlight a new generation of emerging talents and a new wave of filmmakers.” The festival’s jury comprises of seven members from the film industry, music industry, and other artistic and cultural fields, who have no relation to the films in competition. They award the best film in each category after private screenings.

The monthly award winners receive a digital official certificate and may upload their credits on IMDb.

Sab Rab De Bande, the Indian documentary short directed by Sukhdeep Singh, won the Best Social Justice Short award and an honorable mention as Best LGBTQ Film. According to IMDb, the documentary, “brings forth the various challenges that LGBTQ Sikhs grapple with and the different ways in which they reconcile their faith and gender/sexual identities.”

Decoding Shankar, a celebration of the work of singer-composer Shankar Mahadevan with interviews from various Indian celebrities, directed by Deepti Pillay Sivan, won the Best Biographical Feature Film award.

Chuzhal, the Malayalam mystery thriller directed by debutant Biju Maani, won the award under the Best Supernatural Film category. Produced by Nisha Maheshwaran under the Nakshatra Pictures Production banner, Chuzhal features actors Sreenath Gopinath, Jaffar Idukki, Sanju Prabhakar, Abin Mary, Gazal Ahamed, and RJ Nilja. The film is currently streaming on Neestream and Saina Play. 

According to IMDb, Chuzhal revolves around five young people at a hill station resort, who are haunted by an unseen presence.

Exchange Offer, directed by Saunak Mitra, won the Best Senior Film award. The synopsis of the film on FilmFreeway reads: “A complaint registered to the manufacturing company for a dead computer brings back nostalgia and surprises in the life of a retired school principal who leads a lonely, mundane life.”


Five Point Three, directed by Vaibhav Dixit, won the Best Indie Feature Film Award. According to FilmFreeway, the film follows the protagonist Gagan on a bicycle journey through which he discovers his inner voice which makes him aware of his unknown calibre as a musician.

Indian filmmaker Mithilesh Gunasekaran won the Best Young Filmmaker award for his documentary titled Garu

All the monthly winners of the Cannes World Film Festival are automatically entered into the annual competition for an opportunity to have their film screened at a theatre in Cannes, France. The annual nominees for 2021 will be announced at the end of January 2022. The annual award ceremony is scheduled to take place in 2022 at the White House, a luxurious villa located in Cannes.