THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: As the countdown for Kerala’s biggest film fete starts, an alternative movement of independent filmmakers in the state has raised some serious questions. Though a much-hyped and celebrated event, IFFK has lost the proper orientation over the years, say the members of the forum which includes nearly thirty regional filmmakers.
“The festival has lost its professional trait and has become more of a carnival,” says K R Manoj, director of ‘Kanyaka Talkies’. “While all major festivals provide a platform for regional films to reach the global circuit, IFFK doesn’t promote any bilateral process. Though IFFK brings world cinema to Kerala, the State Chalachitra Academy hardly takes any step to take regional films to international festivals,” he added.
Implementing the recommendations of Adoor committee will have a very positive impact on the festival and regional filmmakers, says Sajin Babu, whose debut film ‘Asthamayam Vare’ will be screened in the Competition section of this year’s IFFK.
“While Marathi and Kannada films get commendable subsidies the same is not the case of Malayalam films and Malayalam filmmakers are left in the lurch.
The report recommends `25 lakh subsidy for 10 Malayalam films every year to promote good regional cinema, which will be a good support for independent filmmakers. Moreover, it also assures the release of non-commercial film ventures, though for limited days or shows,” he says.
The members of the forum say that they feel this time regional cinema has got a good representation in IFFK which includes two Malayalam films in the Competition section.
“We are looking forward to the 19th IFFK as it can really bring about some constructive changes. If Adoor committee guidelines are followed, it will make the festival more meaningful,” says Sudevan, director of ‘CR No: 89’. Meanwhile, Raveendran, chairman of ‘Marketing Malayalam Cinema’, the marketing section of 18th IFFK, says the initiative has been quite successful as representatives from various parts of the globe were briefed on new Malayalam cinema and provided with DVDs.
“We could send six Malayalam films to the Muscat International Film Festival. But we tried to promote only films that were part of the mart. Any Malayalam filmmaker could have been part of it, presenting their films in front of the select international audience. But some filmmakers chose not to be part of it.Moreover, we had shortlisted and handed over nearly 45 scripts to the Academy,” he says.