Expert Committee calls for upgrading IFFI to International Standards

New Delhi, Aug.25 (ANI): An expert committee comprising well-known personalities of film and entertainment world and officials on Wednesday presented its report to Ambika Soni with its recommendations suggesting upgrading International Film Festival of India (IFFI) to international standards.

The key recommendations of the committee submitted for consideration include the suggestion that the Competition section may be enhanced from its present status of a specialized competition to an international competition open to all. A recommendation has also been made to introduce two new awards- Best Actor and Best Actress.

As per the expert committee's suggestions, the winner of the award will be given a Silver Peacock, a certificate and a cash prize of Rs 10 lakh each. The total cash awards would now amount to Rs 90 lakh.

The committee has also suggested that the final entries in the International Competition section may be increased from the present 15 to 18.

With a view to positioning the festival at par with international standards, the committee has recommended that workshops may be held at IFFI to discuss new technology initiatives and Master Classes should be conducted by eminent people from world cinema.

As part of the exercise, the Committee constituted four sub committees to study issues that would enable the upgradation of the festival.

The four committees were, Technical Sub-Committee chaired by A.K. Bir, Sponsorship Sub-Committee chaired by Pooja Shetty Deora, Events Sub-Committee chaired by Govind Nihalani and Structural Reforms Sub-Committee chaired by Pritish Nandy.

All the four sub-committees studied the relevant issues in detail and submitted their reports to the Expert Committee.

The Technical Sub-Committee has given a list of technical upgrades required to improve the quality of the viewing experience at IFFI.

The Sub-Committee's report along with Mr. Bir's report for IFFI 2009 prepared for the Madgaon auditorium and his 'Future View Point' document for a new auditorium in Goa were also placed before the Expert Committee.

The Sponsorship Sub-Committee outlined measures for building brand IFFI internationally.

The Events Sub-Committee has proposed a series of initiatives under the aegis of New Products Platform (NPP). The committee recommended to upgrade the web site for IFFI on the lines of other international film festivals.

It has also suggested that the Film Market must be developed to international standards and provide business opportunities to Indian film makers.

It also felt that International studios and sales agents should be invited for IFFI as per international norms.

The Committee also recommended that in the Indian Panorama section, the Jury should not be bound to select 5 films from among 20 recommended by FFI and the Film Producers Guild. Rather, they should be free to select fewer than 5 films, if the standards of excellence were not met in their opinion. To enhance participation, the Committee recommended Q and A sessions to be held post Indian Panorama screenings at IFFI.

The sub committee on Structuring has outlined a roadmap regarding IFFI's future structure keeping in mind its mandate and responsibilities in the future.

Members of the Expert Committee included Kamal Haasan, Pritish Nandy, Govind Nihalani, Shabana Azmi, Karan Johar, A.K. Bir, Prasoon Joshi, Nandita Das, Kishwar Desai, Maithili Rao, Lakshmikant Shetgaonkar, C.S. Sapra, Chief Secretary Goa, Director DFF and Joint Secretary (Films) as the Member Secretary.

The Chairman of the Expert Committee on International Film Festival of India (IFFI), Pritish Nandy, presented the Committee's Report to Union Minister for Information and Broadcasting, Ambika Soni along with A.K. Bir, Govind Nihalani and Kishwar Desai.

Speaking on the occasion, Mrs. Soni appreciated the good work done by the Committee and thanked the Committee for submitting the report within a short span of time.

She further stated that the Ministry would now process the recommendations made by the Committee. (ANI)

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