With the International Film Festival of India (IFFI) 2015, India’s annual film extravaganza, having just come to an end, NRI Achievers brings you a bouquet of interesting nuggets from Goa, written specially for our readers by Jyoti Venkatesh, our cinema maven. Sit back in your chair, and plunge headlong into it. You will enjoy it.
TWO DIFFERENT DIRECTORS, TWO DIFFERENT FILMS
Indonesian director Angga Dwimas Sasongko, whose latest film FILOSOFI KOPI was featured in the International Competition section of the IFFI; and Israeli director Uri Barbash whose latest film KAPO IN JERUSALEM was also screened as part of the IFFI, briefed us about films being made in their countries. Jakartan Angga Dwimas said that his latest film FILOSOFI KOPI, which won nominations from Citra for Best Director, Best Writing and Adapted screenplay, was about soul-searching and making peace with the past through coffee. “My film is based on Dewi Lestari’s short story and has been dubbed as the first ever user-generated film in Indonesia. It was shot in 14 days with a budget of around 2, 00,000 US dollars.”
Sasongko reiterated that Indonesia, with a population of 250 million people, has a mere 1000 cinema houses, far too meager, and lamented that as there were no outlets to showcase art-house films, only mainstream films were being made. He also added that for around 20 years, no movie was being made in his country and said that he is happy when he saw the Indian film lovers watching every film engaging them, laughing with the film and clapping when there were emotional scenes, much unlike his country.
JACKIE SHROFF TO BE BRAND AMBASSADOR OF MIFF 2016
For the first time in the annals of the bi-annual Mumbai International Film Festival (MIFF), renowned actor Jackie Shroff has been appointed as the Brand Ambassador for the festival, to be held between January 28 and February 3 at the Films Division Complex at 24, Peddar Road in Mumbai. MIFF is a globally renowned International film festival of short, animation and documentary films organized by the Films Division of India for the Union Ministry of Information & Broadcasting.
FILM TOURISM SYMPOSIUM
NFDC Film Bazaar, 2015 hosted successful Film Tourism Symposium sessions with different Government Bodies and Film Industry Delegates from November 21-24 to facilitate the ease of shooting films in India. Post the Ministry of Information & Broadcasting’s initiative to set up the Film Facilitation Office (FFO), which has come into being as the one-stop shop for facilitating film shoots in India, the Ministry of Tourism in association with the Ministry of I&B and the NFDC held a four-day Symposium, November 21–24, 2015, on Film Tourism. The Symposium was designed to encourage dialogue between members of the film fraternity and government bodies, on the current challenges facing filmmakers to film in India.
SESSION WITH THE MINISTRY OF HOME AFFAIRS
A session with the representative of the Ministry of Home Affairs and the Indian and International film industry professionals was held to discuss issues pertaining to issuance of exclusive visas for shooting in India and faster clearances/ permissions from the various authorities under the aegis of the Ministry. The Symposium concluded with a session with the Ministry of Railways, represented by Sh. Narendra A. Patil, CPRO, to discuss existing issues while shooting in various locations owned by the Railways and deliberate on possible solutions for speedier filming clearances.
Eminent film fraternity members included Shyam Benegal, Ramesh Sippy, Prakash Jha, Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra, Sudhir Mishra, Raj Kumar Hirani, Anubhav Sinha, Kabir Khan, Vani Tripathi Tikoo, Bharat Bala, Sanjay Suri. Well-known Producers and line producers, Iqbal Kidwai, Pravesh Sahni, Raman Lamba, Deborah Bennatar were also present for deliberations. The international community was represented by Ruth Harley (Former CEO Screen Australia and New Zealand Film Commission), Gisella Carr (Chief Executive, Film New Zealand), James Weyman from Ontario Media Corp., German producer Michael Henricks, French Producer Marc Irmer amongst others.
State Tourism bodies like The MP Tourism, TN Tourism, Film Cell Gujarat, Daman Diu & Dadar Nagar Haveli, were also present in these discussions.
Started in 2008, the Film Bazaar has come a long way and become a sought after annual film market that connects filmmakers with producers, distributors and critics. This year’s Film Bazaar marked many new beginning besides creating networking opportunities for mainstream as well as new filmmakers and saw participation of more than 1100 Delegates from over 38 countries.
With the focus on NFDC’s objective to promote India as a destination for filming, Knowledge Series had two sessions on Film in India with state focus on West Bengal and Daman – Diu & Dadra Nagar Haveli. With State focus on West Bengal, Surajit Bose, Director of Tourism, the Government of West Bengal along with filmmaker Sudhir Mishra spoke about shooting there. Talking about his experience, Sudhir Mishra said, “I shot CALCUTTA MAIL a few years ago. It’s only in Bengal that a police inspector will tell you a better angle for your shot.” With focus on Daman – Diu & Dadra Nagar Haveli, Vinod P Kavle, Secretary (Tourism), DD & DNH along with filmmaker Karan Malhotra spoke about shooting there. Karan shot his debut film, AGNEEPATH in Diu and sharing his experience he said, “30-40% of AGNEEPATH was shot in Diu, which is actually a huge chunk of the movie. It’s a dream for any film maker, who wants to concentrate on film making.”