Online edition of India's National Newspaper
Friday, Dec 23, 2005
Google



Tamil Nadu
News: Front Page | National | Tamil Nadu | Andhra Pradesh | Karnataka | Kerala | New Delhi | Other States | International | Opinion | Business | Sport | Miscellaneous | Engagements |
Advts:
Classifieds | Employment | Obituary |

Tamil Nadu - Chennai Printer Friendly Page   Send this Article to a Friend

Film fete can do with more money

Sudhish Kamath

But it's still early days for Chennai festival


  • You have to pay about $1,000 per screening for a reasonably decent film
  • Direct connection between film festivals and tourism, says filmmaker

    CHENNAI: The rain may have kept the crowds away but halfway into the Chennai International Film Festival (CIFF), one can see the silver lining.

    Serious film-lovers and movie buffs, who braved the weather, were rewarded with no queues to fight. Unlike last time, this year there is no scramble for seats.

    Film student Livingston has seen 10 films since the festival started on the evening of December 17. "I've been here all the time. The German film on the second world war, Rosenstrasse was the best," he says.

    At the Film Chamber on Thursday afternoon, when Kamal Sadanah's Karkash was screened, the hall was half-full. Or half-empty, depending on how you see it.

    Though held at a very small scale compared to the International Film Festival of India at Goa or the International Film Festival of Kerala, the local edition at Anand theatre and Film Chamber has to be content with its set of faithfuls because of limited funds.

    While governments pumped in Rs. 10 crores and Rs. 1.4 crores for IFFI and IFFK respectively, the Tamil Nadu Government's Tourism Department this year, has sponsored Rs. 3 lakhs. But then, the CIFF is only in its third year. "There should be more money put into this festival," feels filmmaker Hariharan.

    "And there have to be more people from the filmmaking community who have to be a part of it. The other film festivals are run by filmmakers, and they develop an instant rapport with the festival," he adds.

    Outstanding crowd

    "The kind of crowd that came to the Thiruvananthapuram festival was outstanding. The aisles were overflowing, because there was an atmosphere of credibility. If people like Balachander, Balu Mahendra, Mani Ratnam come forward to participate, it will help to showcase our cinema. But, Kerala has taken 10 years to develop. We have a long way to go," he says.

    The problem lies with the fact that CIFF is seen as a small society event. "The hard truth of festivals is that to get good films you have to pay money. You have to pay about $1,000 per screening for a reasonably decent film," Hariharan says.

    Festivals are about good films. And good films cost money.

    To the credit of the organisers, the Indo Cine Appreciation Foundation has managed to collaborate with the local embassies and International centres for cultural exchange to put a credible collection of International cinema.

    "We are trying to get The Child which was the closing film for IFFI," says an excited E. Thangaraj, festival director. "We have had participation of directors from Germany, U.S. and Australia," he says.

    Though noteworthy, most of these films are the ones that have done the rounds at other festivals held merely days before the CIFF.

    The Isabelle Huppert and Ismail Merchant retrospectives were a part of IFFI, Goa. Hence, outstation participants find little reason to visit the city.

    Like Hariharan says, "There is a direct connection between film festivals and tourism. Unless and until a festival becomes popular and oriented to people, we will not have the city buzzing with excitement like it happens in Thiruvananthapuram during the festival."

    Printer friendly page  
    Send this article to Friends by E-Mail



    Tamil Nadu

    News: Front Page | National | Tamil Nadu | Andhra Pradesh | Karnataka | Kerala | New Delhi | Other States | International | Opinion | Business | Sport | Miscellaneous | Engagements |
    Advts:
    Classifieds | Employment | Obituary | Updates: Breaking News |

  • Sivananda Orphanage


    News Update


    The Hindu Group: Home | About Us | Copyright | Archives | Contacts | Subscription
    Group Sites: The Hindu | Business Line | The Sportstar | Frontline | The Hindu eBooks | The Hindu Images | Home |

    Copyright 2005, The Hindu. Republication or redissemination of the contents of this screen are expressly prohibited without the written consent of The Hindu