The Toni Hagen Foundation was set up in honour of the Swiss geologist and development philosopher Toni Hagen (1917-2003). Over the course of the 1950s and 60s, first as a Swiss development official and later as a United Nations expert, Toni Hagen trekked through a largely uncharted Nepal and wrote about its history, people, geography and economy of what till then was still a largely “forbidden” kingdom. He introduced Nepal to the world and to Nepalis.
The Foundation supports the publication and production of content and activities to enhance the knowledge base of the Himalayan region among young Nepalis. This grant supports documentary film production. The first group of films produced under the Toni Hagen Documentary Grant are “Blues of Pink” by Grishma Giri, “Chitrapuri Nagar” by Rajeela Shrestha, and “Gaine” by Pradeep Dhakal who was awarded the Best Student Film in Film South Asia (FSA) 2022.
The second batch of films comprises “The Cremator” by Nishon Shakya, “Saparu (A Celebration of Death)” by Aditya Khadka and “Lahureni (Gurkha Girl)” by Bishal Roka Magar which won the Best National Documentary Film Award at Nepal International Film Festival (NIFF) 2022 and The Tareque Masud Award for Best Debut Film at Film South Asia (FSA) 2022.
The third batch of films were “I Wanted to be like Madhuri Dixit” by Ankit Manandhar Khadgi, “Bearer of Glass Beads” by Pratibha Pant, “Where Water Hyacinths Grow” by Aishwarya Baidar.
Similarly, the fourth batch films were “Legacy” by Norbu Punel which was screened at kimff 2022. The three films “Wagging Tale” by Samagra Shah, “Radio Udaypur” by Pushpa Joshi, and “Colorful in White” by Aditya Chaudhary are yet to be screened. All grant projects are screened at kimff after their completion.
Top three films will be screened at kimff 2024 happening on 29 May – 2 June.