~Sarin and Sonam’s first feature, Dreaming Lhasa, premiered at TIFF 2005 in the Discovery section~
Indian-Tibetan couple Ritu Sarin and Tenzing Sonam’s independently produced second feature, The Sweet Requiem, will have its World Premiere at Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) 2018 in the Contemporary World Cinema section.
Teaming up with New York-based producer Shrihari Sathe, Sarin and Sonam’s journey while making The Sweet Requiem was a difficult and challenging one. Ritu says, “We knew it was not going to be easy to make a low budget film featuring non-professional actors that required us to shoot at 15,000 feet in sub-zero temperatures and then in the full summer heat of Delhi. But we persevered and with the support and hard work of so many people, we managed to get to this point. We are so thrilled to be premiering at TIFF!”
Tenzing adds, “Our film is set among the exile Tibetan community in India, a group about whose lives and experiences so little is known. I can’t express how it means to be able to launch the film at TIFF. It’s a vindication of the passion and dedication of everyone who was involved in the film.”
The Sweet Requiem tells the story of Dolkar, a young Tibetan woman living in Delhi. One day, when she unexpectedly sees a man from her past, long-suppressed memories of her traumatic escape from Tibet come flooding back, and she is propelled on an obsessive search for reconciliation and closure.
Sarin and Sonam have been making films together for more than 30 years. They have made several award-winning documentary films and a number of video installations. Their debut narrative feature, Dreaming Lhasa (2005), was executive produced by Jeremy Thomas and Richard Gere, and premiered at the 2005 Toronto International Film Festival. Their documentary, The Sun Behind the Clouds (2009), won the Vaclav Havel Award at the One World Film Festival, Prague. Their most recent feature documentary, When Hari Got Married (2012), is currently on Netflix.
They are also the founders and directors of the Dharamshala International Film Festival, one of India’s leading independent film festivals.