FD promises to take up documentary films' cause

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Mumbai, Feb 6 (UNI) The Films Division will make every effort to ensure that short films and documentaries are screened in cinema halls across the country, chief producer Kuldeep Sinha assured today.

He was speaking at a seminar organised by the Indian Documentary Producers Association (IDPA) as part of the ongoing Mumbai International Film Festival (MIFF).

Mr Sinha said in association with the IDPA, every effort would be made to ensure that the Supreme Court directive, which makes screening of documentary films mandatory in cinema halls, is implemented in true spirit.

The exhibitor pays one per cent of the collection to the producer of the documentary who in turn gives the rights for a certain period.

The exhibitors shun screening documentaries and short films citing heavy losses as most of the commercial films are box office flops.

Cinema Owners and Exhibitors Association (COEA) president R V Vidhani, while speaking on the occasion, suggested that there should be a dedicated television channel to solely screen documentaries and short films.

Film-maker and writer from Chennai Gnani Sankaran, however, felt that a television channel can only be a supplementary medium, but the big sreen has a bigger impact and documentaries are meant for the big screen.

It was decided at the seminar that a joint representation by Films Division, IDPA and Exhibitor's Association would meet the Information and Broadcasting Ministry to find a solution to the problem.

The seminar, conducted by film-maker and IDPA president Jahnu Barua were attended by various film makers including Aribam Syam Sharma from Manipur, Arijit Dutta from Kolkata, Vijaya Mule from Delhi, Narendra Kondre and Chandita Mukherjee from Mumbai, film critics and journalists from across the country.

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