NEW DELHI: Union Minister for Information and Broadcasting Prakash Javadekar on Tuesday inaugurated the virtual ‘India Pavilion’ at 74th Cannes Film Festival, saying he hopes the novel coronavirus pandemic ends soon and people come back to the theatres.The 2021 edition of the Cannes Film Festival kick-started from July 6 and will conclude on July 17.The ministry has opened up a facilitation office to give approvals to international filmmakers to release their films in the country, with a single clearance window, Javadekar added.Addressing the virtual inauguration, organised by the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, Govt of India, jointly with FICCI, the minister said this is the second year when the pavilions are virtually organised but the business is real including the creativity, talent, technology and India offers the best of these.“The virtual India pavilion can become a meeting place to meet and discuss the future of the world of cinema,” he added.The minister also stated that many of the international films are being filmed in India with over 500 sites available. In order to attract more international filmmakers to India, the government of India has taken a number of steps, he said.“We have now opened up a facilitation office which guarantees that all permissions are given in one go,” he added.Javadekar further stated that a lot of Hollywood movies such as “Lion King”, “Jungle Book”, “Life of Pi”, “X-Men”, and “Avatar” have got their VFX animation done in India, and the country’s contribution to world cinema is also increasing.Talking about the virtual ‘India Pavilion’, the minister said it can serve as a meeting ground to discuss the future of the world of cinema.“Cannes Film Festival is a festival of creativity and talent but simultaneously a place for business as well. The Cannes Film market offers a big opportunity for the filmmakers of the world. Films will do huge business after the pandemic and many of the films are shot for OTT platforms also,” he added.According to producer Ekta Kapoor, India weaves a lot of local inbuilt flavours in its storytelling.“India is known as a content creating nation. Indian content has always been the soft ambassador of India and it has a lot of appeal in the international market. Collaborations are the way forward for any company and there are a lot of opportunities in India,” Kapoor added.Prasoon Joshi, writer, poet and chairman, Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC), said the Indian film industry is heading in the right direction along with the focus on regional cinema.“Indian audiences today are more active seekers and the pandemic has given more acceleration to explore the world of cinema. There is a churn in Indian cinema,” he added.Cannes Film Festival, one of the most prestigious movie galas in the world, was initially scheduled to take place from May 11 to May 22 but was pushed by two months due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.Last year’s edition was cancelled due to the pandemic and replaced by a low-key event in October, showcasing short films but without the A-list movie stars, directors and producers. (PTI)
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