BENGALURU: The Children’s Film Society of India is getting revamped to meet the demand of the current movie market for children’s movies, both within the country and globally.
Shravan Kumar, chief executive officer, said, “I was put at the helm of affairs on May, 11, 2012, which happened to be the 57th year of CFSI. The first and foremost challenge before me was to generate revenue and promote children-centric movies.”
Since then, the autonomous body under the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting has made many changes, both in terms of marketing and cinema production, to bring Indian children’s movies to the forefront globally.
The success of the movie Gattu, which revolves around the dream of a street kid, involved a lot of leg work for Shravan Kumar. He went around meeting everyone involved in the making of the film. “Releasing a movie is like organising a wedding. You have to go and meet everyone. Special screenings were held for school principals and theatre owners were requested to book weekday morning shows.”
The first screening of Gattu was held in New Delhi and later in Mumbai. The CEO has also created an app in his name, Shravan Kumar, where people can put in requests for screening children’s films.
The screening rights of a movie for online audience, in-flight audience and other modes were also sold, keeping redtapism at bay and bring in maximum profit for the producer and the filmmaker.
A concept called ‘Little Directors’, where a child director can pitch their story, has also been introduced. If the script is selected by the mentors of CFSI, the child will be taught to make the movie.
In the recently concluded International Children’s Festival held in Hyderabad from November 14-20, around 200 films, made by child directors, were screened. One of the movies was of Vir Hirani, son of famous Bollywood director Raju Hirani.
The CFSI, in an attempt to popularise Indian movies in the global market, has also started roping in foreign co-producers. More children’s movies are being sent to international film festivals and are being appreciated, says Shravan Kumar.
The body is also inviting scripts from more young filmmakers. Once the script is selected by a panel, CFSI conducts workshops to mentor the children.
“We are trying to get the public interested in children’s movies and we have been seeing a lot of positive changes. The last edition of our film festival saw 1,204 entries from over 80 countries, which is a big achievement. I hope the numbers improve in the next year,” said Shravan Kumar.
App developed for requesting film screenings
Little Director to encourage child filmmakers
New marketing strategies, like screening movies for schoolchildren, selling screening rights to
generate revenue for filmmakers
International producers are being roped in