MUMBAI: FICCI FRAMES 2007 kicked off in Mumbai today with Italy being the partner country for the same. With 1500 delegates from over 20 countries across the world, FRAMES witnessed a full house here. In his inaugural address, Indian Information and Broadcasting minister Priya Ranjan Dasmunsi said, “Sitting here in India, I couldn’t imagine the impact that the Indian media and entertainment industry has globally. In this light, the industry has to cope with the challenges of growth.”
The ministry had formed five core groups to identify the shortcomings of the industry last year and on 27 February, 2007, the proposal from all the groups were submitted to the minister. Discussions on the same will be held in Mumbai later this year informed Dasmunsi.
One of the core concerns is that of piracy. “We must put an end to piracy – legally, commercially and progressively,” said Dasmunsi. Plans are also afoot to draft a legislative policy on piracy to give a fillip to digitalization in the entertainment industry, which should be in place by the end of the year.
Another issue that will be addressed by the ministry is the amendment in the Cinematography Act of 1952.
Dasmunsi also urged the industry to form an export promotion council. Ã¢â‚¬Å“The participation of the Indian film industry in films festivals and markets overseas is necessary not only for showcasing our cinema but also to develop new overseas markets. While the Ministry takes the lead in such participation, I would request the industry to seriously consider the formation of an export promotion council so that the benefits available under different schemes of the Government can be made available to the industry.Ã¢â‚¬Â
The government would also be scrutinizing the draft optical disc law proposed by FICCI and further action on the matter could be expected shortly.
What’s more, the 60th anniversary of Indian freedom this year also coincides with the 60th year of the Cannes Film Festival. As a result of this, the Cannes Film Festival, which will be held later this year, will showcase some Indian films depicting the freedom struggle at the festival. “Delegates from the Cannes Film Festival will be in India to screen and shortlist the movies that will be aired at the festival,” informed Dasmunsi.
The National Film Development Corporation of India (NFDC) will also be provided a strong boost this year and will soon get a new dimension. The minister also announced that the government will fund movies on the freedom struggle of India. “We invite producers and directors to come forward and make movies depicting the Indian freedom struggle. We will not interfere with the creative aspects of the movie but will only fund it and provide any kind of support that is required. These films will be kept as a ‘golden treasure’, which will be stored in the National Archives of India,” said Dasmunsi.
Additionally, the minister urged the Indian film fraternity to address the issue of children’s films in India and assured the frat that making of animation and children’s films will be encouraged by the government.
ItalyÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s Minister of Communications Paolo Gentiloni Silveri noted that his country, the early mover of technology as diverse as internet and mobile phones, was challenged by digitalization. Bridging the digital divide and speeding up technological innovation, he said were the main challenges in the future.
The Italian Minister said this was the right time to promote Indian and Italian locations for film production and the governments of the two countries were committed to creating an enabling environment with systematic regulation of the industry. The session was also attended by Bollywood actress Kareena Kapoor, Italian actress Anna Galiena and actor Giancarlo Giannini of Italy.
The FICCI president Habil Khorakiwala said FICCI-FRAMES offered a tremendous opportunity for exchange of ideas and actual tie-ups for technology transfer in the entertainment and media industry. He announced the award of Ã¢â‚¬ËœLiving LegendsÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ to film personalization Kamal Hasan and Rekha who would be honoured by FICCI on 28 March. The BAF FRAMES awards best animation films in different categories would be presented a day earlier on 27 March.
The inaugural session was also addressed by FICCI Entertainment Committee chairman Yash Chopra, Ã¢â‚¬ËœFondazione Cinema per RomaÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ president Goffredo Bettini, FICCI Entertainment Committee co-chairman and SET India CEO Kunal Dasgupta, FICCI Western Regional Council chairman Sushil Jiwarajka and Reliance Entertainment Pvt. Ltd chairman Amit Khanna.