Syeda Neegar Banu is a female independent filmmaker in Bangladesh who has more than 20 years of experience both in film and TV media. She completed her master’s degree in film studies and video production in the United Kingdom (UK). Currently, she is based in Khulna, the southernmost coastal city of Bangladesh. She works with the local people who have experienced various hardships due to the changing climate.
Syeda is one of the most promising and talented independent filmmakers in Bangladesh, who has a unique vision and style that reflects her personal and professional experiences. She is also a passionate activist and educator, who uses her films as a medium to inspire and empower others, particularly women and juveniles.
Syeda Neegar Banu was born in Khulna, the third-largest city in Bangladesh. She developed a passion for filmmaking at an early age and participated in various film festivals and workshops at home and abroad. She won several awards for her short films and documentaries that focused on social issues and human rights.
She started her media career on Channel-I (a renowned private TV Channel in Bangladesh) In 2004. Then she explored and strengthened her career working in various media organizations as a Program Producer.
She pursued her higher study in film education from the University of West London in UK, where she graduated in 2011. She returned to Bangladesh and started working as an independent filmmaker, producing films that explore the diverse and complex realities of her country.
She moved to Khulna in 2013, where she has been working on a series of films that document the lives and struggles of coastal people who are affected by climate change. She has been collaborating with local communities and organizations to raise awareness and advocate for solutions to the environmental and social problems that they face.
Since 2014 Syeda has been the founding Director of Parallel Cine Movement (PCM), the first organization in Khulna that promotes Gono (People’s) Cinema - a concept of community-based filmmaking. She regularly organizes workshops and lectures on film for different age groups. She mentors more than 25 young filmmakers and works closely with them.
- Director and writer of Nona Pani (Barren Waters) a feature film released in 2023. (
- Directed 20 free-length films.
- Supervised young filmmakers to produce 22 short films.
- Produced 144 Vlogs for a YouTube channel titled KK Khulna.
- Participated in filmmaker courses at the Asian Film Academy in Busan, South Korea, and Talent Campus in Berlin, Germany, and New Delhi, India.
- Masterclass on Women Behind the Camera in European Film Festival, Dhaka, 2023.
- Winner of Best Film Script Award for `Nona Pani (Barren Waters)’ Produced by - -- Bengal Foundation, Dhaka, 2018.
- Awarded Funds for the making of a documentary film `The Beauty Worker’ sponsored by Steps Towards Development (NGO), Bangladesh, 2005.
- Won Best Film Jury Award for a short fiction film `The Trap’, in the 8th International Shorts and Independent Film Festival, Bangladesh, 2003.
Founder Member of Parallel Cine Movement (PCM) Film Production Platform, Khulna, Bangladesh
Secretary of Khulna Institute, Bangladesh
Coordinator of Ganer Tori Bangladesh
Member of Documentary Film Council, Dhaka
Work Experience in Electronic Media
Program Producer - Desh TV Limited, Dhaka, 2008-2009.
Program Producer - Ekushey TV Limited (ETV), Dhaka, 2007-2008.
Executive Officer - Channel-I and Impress Telefilm Ltd., Dhaka, 2004-2007.
Work Experience in NGO Sector
- Researcher and Filmmaker - Bangladesh Association for Sustainable Development (BASD), Khulna from 2019 - to date.
- Researcher and Filmmaker - NETZ Partnership for Development and Justice, Dhaka, 2021-2022.
- Researcher and Filmmaker - CSS, Khulna, (Humanitarian & Socio-Economic Development Organization) 2015 -2017.
- Development Officer - Bangladesh Nari Progati Sangha, Dhaka, 1996 - 2003.
- Ki Vabe Cinema Banabo (How to make a film?), a book for Children published in 2023.
- Tutukin O Onnano Golpo (Fiction Collection) was published in 2016.
- Film conveys villagers’ resilience to climate change and conservatism, Online journal -NextBlue, storytelling platform about water and climate change, the Netherlands, name of publisher- Joep Janssen, date of publication 22 Aug 2023.
- Satyajit Ray in the thoughts of the young generation of Bangladesh, Satyajit Bhinno Mone Onyo Kone, editor, Banibrata Mukhopadhyay, Kolkata, India, December 2020.
- The Concept and Practice of Diaspora- Open A New Horizon of Free Cinema,
Analysis and evaluation of the virtues and limitations of Auteur Theory, published in academia.edu 2019.
- Gono (People’s) Cinema: We have to tell our own stories
- Alternative Film in Bangladesh
Both articles were published in Bangladesh Cinema and Television Institute Journal, Issue 3, Year 2, Volume 2, December 2016.