Private Project

Party Poster - for press & distribution only

In suburban Mumbai, science, religion and politics comically collide amidst a raging pandemic, when a group of laundrymen set out to design a poster celebrating a hugely popular annual festival worshipping the deity Ganesha.

  • Rishi Chandna
  • Rishi Chandna
  • Munna, Rajesh, Prem, Ma'am
    Key Cast
  • Navagat Prakash
  • Ashutosh Thakur
  • Rishi Chandna
  • Grant Davis
  • Alok Kotian
  • Aditya Singh
  • Adil Penwalla
  • Project Type:
    Documentary, Short
  • Genres:
    Comedy, drama
  • Runtime:
    20 minutes
  • Completion Date:
    October 20, 2021
  • Country of Origin:
  • Country of Filming:
  • Language:
    English, Hindi, Marathi
  • Shooting Format:
  • Aspect Ratio:
  • Film Color:
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
  • Fribourg International Film Festival
    March 22, 2022
    World Premiere
    International Competition section
  • Glasgow Short Film Festival
    United Kingdom
    March 25, 2022
    UK premiere
    International Competition section
  • It's All True International Documentary Film Festival, Brazil
    Sao Paulo
    April 1, 2022
    Latin American premiere
    International Short Film Competition
  • Krakow Film Festival
    June 3, 2022
    Polish premiere
  • Docaviv International Documentary Film Festival
    Tel Aviv
    May 26, 2022
    International Short Film Competition
  • Palm Springs International Film Festival ShortFest

    United States
    June 25, 2022
    International Short Film Competition
  • International Documentary and Short Film Festival of Kerala (IDSFFK)

    August 27, 2022
    Asian premiere
    Second Best Short Documentary Award, International Short Film Competition
Distribution Information
  • Rishi Chandna
    Country: Worldwide
    Rights: All Rights, Internet, Video on Demand, Pay Per View, Hotel, Airline, Theatrical, Video / Disc, Free TV, Paid TV, Console / Handheld Device
Director Biography - Rishi Chandna

Rishi Chandna is a self-taught, independent filmmaker based in Mumbai and Goa.

His debut short film, TUNGRUS (2018), is a black comedy about a Mumbai suburban family divided over eating their dominating pet rooster. It has traveled to 150+ international film festivals (Hot Docs, Visions Du Reel, BFI London Film Festival, IDFA), won 28 awards, and became an Oscar-qualifying short documentary after winning at Slamdance Film Festival, 2019. Tungrus ( has released online on the prestigious New York Times’ OP-DOCS, PBS POV SHORTS, The Criterion Channel and several other platforms such as Atlantic Selects, Amazon Prime, Vimeo (Staff Pick) and Aeon Magazine. In 2018, at the first CCSFA (Critics’ Choice Short Film Awards) held in India, Tungrus was awarded Best Non-Fiction Film, Rishi was awarded Best Director Non-Fiction, and Neha Mehra was awarded Best Editor. Along with Rishi’s interviews, reviews of Tungrus have appeared in top publications in India and abroad such as New York Times, The Globe and Mail, The Hindu, Indian Express, Scroll, Film Companion and more.

Rishi's second short film, PARTY POSTER (2022), a satirical documentary about the political poster culture in India, had its World Premiere at the 36th Fribourg International Film Festival, where it won the CH Cinema Award, awarded by a Swiss student jury. The film has also shown at the Palm Springs International Film Festival, Krakow Film Festival, International Documentary and Short Film Festival of Kerala (awarded Second Best Short Documentary Award, International Short Film Competition), DocAviv, Glasgow Short Film Festival and more. On November 21, 2002, Party Poster released online on New York Times’ OP-DOCS, making it Rishi’s second film to launch on the reputable platform dedicated to short documentaries from around the globe.

Rishi is currently in development of his first feature-length fiction film titled GHOL/THE CATCH. The project has been mentored at the 2021 Sundance Screenwriters Lab, and selected at the Cannes Film Market 2021, the 2021 NFDC Film Bazaar Co-Production Market and the 2021 Hong Kong Asia Film Financing Forum where it won the top HAF Fiction Award for a non – Hong Kong project. He is also in the midst of filming an anthology of three short Tamil fiction films (working title: Tannîr Tales) that represent marginalised communities dealing with issues of climate change and political disenfranchisement in the context of water pollution, access and inequality.

Rishi has also programmed films for Mumbai Film Festival (MAMI, 2019), and Slamdance Film Festival (2020). In 2019, he was the first filmmaker featured on Film Companion’s ‘Artist To Watch For’, a series by renowned film critic Anupama Chopra, that introduces viewers to the rising stars of the Indian film industry.

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Director Statement

Every year in India, on occasions of religious festivals, political elections and even banal events like politicians’ birthdays - vast numbers of posters go up in public places. These posters look absurdly identical - a splatter of primary colours, mugshots of devotees or politicians, and messaging devoted to the festival Gods or wishing their seniors a happy birthday.

For years I have been fascinated by this idiosyncratic practice, and have often wondered about the people and the stories behind it - their motivations and aspirations, the source of their funding and the process itself of making these banners. Now, in the midst of the pandemic and its restrictions, and with the major religious festival of Lord Ganesha approaching, I gained access and worked with a group of three laundry-workers in my neighbourhood in Mumbai; their laundrymen's association regularly created and featured themselves in these posters.

I interviewed them and filmed their process of creating the poster, also capturing the muted celebration of the festival. And I have presented the narrative here in Party Poster, a wry and satirical exploration of how religion, politics and science intersect in the minds of those who feature on these banners, through the prism of this ubiquitous and adaptive poster culture.