Screening of Sri Lankan film to offer candid commentary on 26-year war

September 06, 2013

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. -- “Flying Fish, (Igillena Maluwo),” a film by Sri Lankan filmmaker Sanjeewa Pushpakumara, will be shown from 3:30 to 6:30 p.m. Friday, Sept. 20, in Foster Auditorium, 102 Paterno Library. The film will be followed by a videoconference Q&A session with director Pushpakumara.

Despite winning critical acclaim at film festivals around the world since the premiere at the Rotterdam International Film Festival in 2011, the film was immediately banned after its Sri Lankan debut in Colombo in July 2013. Sri Lanka's Free Media Movement released an official statement criticizing both the censorship of the film and the government’s ongoing investigation, calling these acts an attempt to “militarize arts and culture.”

"Flying Fish" depicts a country that has been torn apart by a long civil war. Critic Tony Rayns has described the film as “indecently beautiful,” declaring that “Sri Lanka has found its true modernist” in Pushpakumara. Described as “shocking” in some reviews and difficult to watch in others, the film is a candid commentary on the state of the nation in the midst of a 26-year war.

This film is not rated and viewer discretion is advised.

This event is free and is co-sponsored by the University Libraries, the Center for Global Studies, the Migration Studies Project and the Sri Lankan Student Association. A trailer can be viewed at

For more information or if you anticipate needing accessibility accommodations or have questions about the physical access provided, contact Helen Sheehy at or 814-863-1347.

Last Updated September 06, 2013