Manoj Srivastava

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Manoj Srivastava

Manoj Srivastava
Born Robbin
(1962-10-06) October 6, 1962 (age 59)
New Delhi, India
Nationality Indian
Height 1.81m

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Manoj Srivastava is an Indian actor, a celebrated filmmaker, author, and film festival director. He currently heads the Jagran Film Festival as a Strategic Consultant[1] and also programmes various international film festivals.[2] Earlier he was the CEO of Entertainment Society of Goa,[3] where he developed Goa as a Film Destination between 2008 and 2012. The Society co-organises the International Film Festival of India every year in Goa along with Government of India.

Personal life

Manoj Srivastava aka Robbin was born and brought up in old Delhi, south of the famous Jama Masjid as the eldest of three brothers. His initial interests were cricket and music. He excelled at a young age in sports, music, dance and debating. Later, he studied sociology and journalism in Delhi. In between he tried modeling and cricket as careers.


Srivastava was a student at Hans Raj College, University of Delhi. In 1985 he joined Doordarshan, the Indian national broadcaster and learnt television and film direction. Later, he studied at Max Muller Bhavan, Kasturba Gandhi Marg, New Delhi. Srivastava went to The Film and Television Institute of India, Pune in 1989 as a student and completed his professional education in Film and Television Production. Till 2000, he worked as a Television Producer for 15 years before joining the International Film Festival of India. Srivastava continued with the Festival for 12 years in various capacities and established Goa as a Film Destination. He is credited with achieving a business volume of over Rupees 100 crores for Goa.[4]


At Doordarshan, in a career span of 15 years, he directed a number of TV shows, music videos, Chat Shows, Documentary Films, Short Films, Tele Films, Dramas, Live broadcasts of countless national and international events and happenings. As part of DD News, he set up the transmission plans of the Channel and directed some of the famous TV Shows like ‘The Big Question’ with Karan Thapar,[5] Mirror of the World. He also covered the Kargil War and the Hijack of AI 814 to Kandhar.

Film Journalism

Srivastava has been writing on cinema for over two decades for publications like the Times of India, The Hindustan Times, BNA Germany, Pickle, Lokmat, Navhind Times, Herald Goa, Screen etc. He has edited journals and brochures for International Film Festival of India and the National Film Awards.

Srivastava has been writing on cinema extensively for over two decades. His writings on Charlie Chaplin and Guru Dutt are considered landmark and quoted often. He writes regularly for foreign media on Indian Cinema . He has his own column "Letters From Bollywood" in the on-line news agency BNA Germany and another one 'Frankly Speaking' in the print edition of BNA Germany, since October 2010 edition of BNA GERMANY. His articles regularly appear in Indian publications like ‘Pickle’.[6] Besides writing on cinema, he has completed a novel, "Evil Within" based on a true life story, and another book a commentary on Delhi, "Dilli 6". His book WIDE ANGLE – History of Indian Cinema is about to be released (December 2014) by Penguin, India. His two other books on cinema are also nearing completion.

He conducted the first and the only credible rating of Indian Cinema in the past 100 years in 2009 as ‘T 20 of Indian Cinema’ [7][8][9] - a nationwide poll on Indian Cinema to initiate Indian Cinema’s centenary celebrations. He invited top 10 young film directors Madhur Bhandarkar, Nagesh Kukunoor, Rituparno Ghosh, P Seshadry, Gajendra Ahire, Manju Bora, Shyama Prasad, Cheran, Rahul Dholakia and Vishal Bhardwaj. He also invited top 10 Film Critics of India to participate along with 2 million people to vote the top 20 films of Indian Cinema in the past 100 years.[10] The selection was recently screened at Jagran film Festival in Mumbai as ‘Jagran Classics’.

Film Festivals

Srivastava joined Directorate of Film Festivals and organized Film Festivals for Government of India under Cultural Exchange Programme, National Film Awards and Indian Panorama selections, various foreign and Indian film festivals and the International Film Festival of India as Deputy Director and Programmer. Later, As Chief Executive Officer at Entertainment Society of Goa he headed the International Film Festival of India, Goa for Government of Goa. During his four year stint in Goa, he established Goa as a Film Destination and Goa was awarded the ‘Best film Destination Award’ in 2012 at Cinemascapes,[11][12] Mumbai. Srivastava also launched a number of other initiatives like 'Single Window Clearance' system for film shootings in Goa, film archive, film library and Goa Cinephile. He is also the co-founder of Extravagant India, Paris.[13][14]

Short Film Movement

Srivastava launched the short film movement in India in a big way by launching the Short Film Center in 2008 at IFFI Goa, a platform for young and upcoming film makers. Ever since, shorts and documentary films have become a trend at film festivals and turned into a movement in India.


Some of his better known films are ‘The Desert Festival’, ‘Zamana Kya Kahega’, ‘Dastaan e Dilli’, ‘Dilli Tha Ek Shahar’, ‘Caught in a Crossfire’, ‘Hari Om Hari’, ‘All Quiet on this Front’, ‘Ajeeb Dastan Hai Ye’, ‘The Way They Marched Ahead’, ‘Kargil- The Untold Stories’ (Series) and The Troubled Waters’. In 2008, Srivastava directed and produced a nine-minute documentary on poor and rich children titled Of haves and have-nots (Hum Panchhi Ek Daal Ke which was a great success. It was screened at the Cannes, Brisbane and many other international film festivals [15]

Lectures, Juries and other positions

Srivastava has delivered lectures on cinema, culture and history around the world. He spoke on ‘Cinema Connects Culture at ‘Dialogue of Civilizations’, Rhodes, Greece for two consecutive years. Each year, he was a regular speaker at ‘The Big Picture Conference’ in Goa by Confederation of Indian Industry between 2008 and 2012, Conferences by Assocham in New Delhi during 2011 and 2012, Cinemascapes in 2010 and 2011, Motion Picture Association of America panels in 2012,[16] Jagran Film Festival in 2012 and 2013 in Bhopal, Dehradoon, and Mumbai on ‘Decoding Co productions’ and ‘Finding Money for Films’, Amity Business School at the HR Summit. Spoke on "GEARING UP FOR TOMORROW'S WORKFORCE - "Trend Setters Vs Replicators’, Open Forum at IFFI Goa every year between 2008 – 2012, ‘Engineering Opinions’ at IIT Delhi

He served on Juries for Indian Documentary Producers’ Association, Archi Design Awards, Shorts at Moonlight Film Festival, Golden Knights film Festival and many others. In August 2011, he served on the international film jury at CINDI Film Festival, Seoul, Korea. He was appointed an 'Observer' at the Berlinale Co-production Market in February 2012 and 2013.

Performing Arts He Compered and acted in Theatre, Film Functions, television programmes, interviewed important national political and other personalities. Worked in the field of advertising as a copy Writer and film maker. Directed Opening Ceremony of IFFI 2002, New Delhi. Directed Closing Ceremony IFFI 2009, Goa-‘Drums of India’.


Srivastava was honoured by the Russian Federal Government and the Republic of Poland.[no citations needed here]