Indo-American filmmaker Sweta Rai’s pandemic documentary on Oscar shortlist

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Indo-American director Sweta Rai’s feature-length documentary, “A Pandemic: Away from the Motherland,” was shortlisted for the 93rd Oscar race, according to Los Angeles media.

The 93rd Annual Academy Awards, designed to honor the best films released between January 1, 2020 and February 28, 2021, will take place at the Dolby Theater in Hollywood on April 25.

The film is now available to stream on Apple TV / iTunes, Google Play and other digital platforms. Photo courtesy: IndoHolly Films

The film features five immigrant doctors working on the front lines of the coronavirus pandemic, currently based in the United States, far from their families in India. Sweta, an American Film Institute (AFI) alumnus, announced her film was being considered for the award on social media.

She became the first female filmmaker of color to not only write and direct, but also produced a 65-minute film from her apartment in downtown Los Angeles during the strict lockdown.

The film, shot remotely with footage recorded from multiple devices in different locations during the lockdown, is a perfect example of the devastating effect the pandemic has had on the lives of families across the world.

The film is now available to stream on Apple TV / iTunes, Google Play and other digital platforms.

Also Read: Unsung Heroes: NRI Sweta Rai Documentary Highlights Stellar Efforts of Indian-Descent Doctors During Pandemic

“When someone lives far from their family, their challenges are different; their emotions are different. But what I have learned is that even though they miss their families in India every day, they are proud of them no matter what country they are in, ”said Rai.

@SwetaRaiFilms

She became the first female filmmaker of color to not only write and direct, but also produced a 65-minute film from her apartment in downtown Los Angeles during the strict lockdown. Photo courtesy of: Twitter / @ SwetaRaiFilms

Rai, CEO and founder of Los Angeles-based film production company Indo Holly Films, performed the Herculean task of coordinating filming in multiple locations on both sides of the world, working around his nearly 24-hour workdays. lockdown topics and restrictions in the United States. and India to deliver a touching and well-assembled piece. Even the amateurish nature of some scenes and the roughness of the videography testify to the ingenuity and innovative spirit of the creators.

“While I have filmed in different cities in the United States, I have also filmed in five smaller towns in India – all remotely,” she said.


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