Nila Madhab Panda

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Nila Madhab Panda
Film Maker Nila Madhab Panda.jpg
Born (1973-10-18) 18 October 1973 (age 44)
Sonepur, Odisha, India
Nationality Indian
Occupation Film Maker, Director
Years active 1998 – present
Spouse(s) Barnali Rath Panda
Children Aatman Panda

Nila Madhab Panda (born 18 October 1973) is a film producer. Panda has produced and directed over 70 diverse and cutting edge films, documentaries and shorts. These films are based on important social issues such as climate change, child labor, education, water issues, sanitation and many other developmental issues in India. His films have won him several awards and critical acclaim. Most of his films have unique insights drawn from his own life, the metaphorical distance that he has traversed from a small obscure village based in one of the remotest parts of India, to metropolitan cities across the globe. His films are entertaining, yet portray profusely socially relevant themes; driving home the point that films can be a powerful medium of positive social change.[1][2]

Career[edit]

Nila Madhab Panda is the most successful Odia director and producer who has been making mainstream and parallel Hindi films. Panda has produced and directed over hundreds of diverse and cutting edge films, documentaries, shorts films and public service advertising campaigns. These films are based on topical societal issues such as climate change, child labor, education, water issues, sanitation and many other developmental issues in India. These are made for national broadcasters, different UN organizations, Governments, BBC, Discovery Channel, National Geography Channel and various ministries/ departments[3]. His films have won him several awards and critical acclaims. He has also served on the juries of several national and international film festivals. Most of his films have unique insights drawn from his own life and experiences, the metaphorical distance that he has traversed from a small obscure village located in one of the remotest parts of India, to metropolitan cities across the globe. His films are entertaining yet portray profusely on socially relevant themes and proved that films can be a powerful medium of positive societal change. The journey started by assisting the director Robin Romanov and Producer, Barbara Brocholli (Producer Bon movies). They both literally shown him the window to the world.

His first feature film “I am Kalam” has become an iconic film winning 34 international awards along with a national award.[4] [5] His second feature film “Jalpari” (desert mermaid)[6] received the MIP Junior award at Cannes. He continued his journey of making path breaking films on various burning themes like “Babloo Happy Hai (babloo is happy), “Kaun Kitney Paani Mein (in troubled water)[7]”. His recent master piece is “Kadvi Hawa (Dark wind)”[8], which was highly rated and critically acclaimed globally. The film also got a national award and many international recognitions. This is one of the first films that brought climate change into cinema. His feature length documentary “God’s own people” narrated by Amitabh Bachhan connects between people’s faith with tree and God.

Halkaa (relief) is his new production, a musical film with children. A very sensitive film brings a fun story about the “Swachhata Abhiyaan” [Clean India] and the importance of sanitation. This film has already won two Grand prix at international film festivals.  

Early Life[edit]

Panda has a humble background, born as the youngest of 5 siblings in a poverty-stricken village Dasharajpur, of Subarnapur district of Western Odisha. His childhood and teenage years were an endless saga of daily struggle for necessities of life, such as daily food, clothing or education. Panda studied till 5th class in a school that had no building in his village. For class 6 & 7, he had to walk 4 km through difficult mud paths. High school was 9 km away from his home.

In 1995, when he failed in graduation at the age of 22, Panda left Delhi to explore new life and avenues. With no money in hand, but with enormous determination and rock-solid will power to excel. With big dreams in mind, he sustained himself by doing small jobs. One thing led to another and he landed in a job of a camera attendant. There he learnt the intricacies of filmmaking that became the stepping stone for his lifelong tryst with the medium which finally led to a life of great fame and accomplishment. He also studied Entrepreneurship at IIM Bangalore.

Today, we know him as the true visionary, he created his own means to shape his destiny from an early age. He is one of the most successful Social entrepreneurs because of his sheer hard work, perseverance, passion for quality and excellence.

Direction[edit]

Feature films[edit]

Year Title Credited as Notes Ref(s)
Director Producer Writer
2002 Swajaldhara Yes Yes Documentary [9]
2005 Climates First Orphans Yes Yes Documentary [9][10]
2010 I am Kalam Yes Yes [11]
2012 Jalpari Yes [12]
2014 Babloo Happy Hai Yes Yes [13]
2015 Kaun Kitne Paani Mein Yes Yes Yes [14]
2016 God's Own People Yes Documentary [15]
2017 Kadvi Hawa Yes Yes Yes [16]
2018 Halkaa Yes Yes [17][18]

Film awards[edit]

  • "Jalpari" Got MIP Junior award for best film, 2012, Cannes
  • Viewers' Choice award at IFFLA, 2011
  • Best Feature Film in Chicago International Children's Film Festival, 2011
  • People's Choice Award at the Montreal International Children's Film Festival, 2011
  • Best Feature Film award at Silent River Film Festival (SRFF), California, 2011
  • Best Director award at Silent River Film Festival (SRFF), California, 2011
  • Best Child Actor award at Silent River Film Festival (SRFF), California, 2011
  • Winner of "The Don Quixote Prize" of the International Cine Club Federations at the Lucas International Film Festival, Germany, 2010
  • Winner of "Best feature film" at the Lucas International Film Festival, Frankfurt 2010
  • "Special Jury mention" CineKid International Film Festivals 2010
  • "International Jury's Special Mention" at the Ale Kino International Film Festival, Poland 2010
  • Bronze Cairo for Best Feature at Cairo International Film Festival for Children, Cairo, 2012
  • The Prize of the International Center of Films For Children & Young People (CIFEJ) at the Cairo International Film Festival for Children, Cairo, 2012
  • Special Diploma for the Best Actor Work at Minsk International Film Festival Listapadzi, 2011
  • "Best actor work" at the Minsk International Film Festival 2010
  • Winner of "Best feature film" from the Indian Panorama by the Young Jury at the 41st International, Film Festival of India 2010
  • Best Debut Director – Aravindam Purashkaram, 2011
  • Golden Elephant Award for the Best Screenplay at 17th International Children's Film Festival, India,2011
  • Special Mention to Harsh Mayar at the 17th International Children's Film Festival of India, 2011
  • Best Feature Film in CMS International Film Festival, 2011
  • 'National Award for best child actor 2011
  • "Audience Favorite choice" at the Barbican London Children Film Festival 2010
  • Audience Favorite at Barbican London Children's Film Festival, 2011
  • Best Feature Film, Dream Fest – Slatina, 2012

Other awards and recognition[edit]

  • Padma Shri, 2016[19]
  • British Council- Creative Futures of India 2006 (Longest Journey award).
  • UK Environment Film Fellowship 2005.
  • Heroism in Cinematography, 2003 THP, New York
  • "Excellence in media" for fighting the cause Female foeticide.
  • United Nations Visual Media fellowship 2002
  • "Odisha icon" 2011
  • "Living Legend" 2012
  • "Son of Odisha" 2012
  • "Bharat Gaurav (India's pride)" 2015
  • Asia Pacific entrepreneurship award
  • Karmaveer Purasakar

References[edit]

External links[edit]