PANJIM: Stating that Konkani cinema has carved a place for itself at the International Film Festival of India (IFFI), Chief Minister Pramod Sawant on Monday said that the Entertainment Society of Goa (ESG), one of the festival organisers, has floated an expression of interest to set up a Film City in the coastal State.
“It is our commitment that we will complete the procedure for this work (Film City) in fast-track and in a time-bound manner,” Sawant averred while welcoming the film fraternity for the 54th IFFI in the coastal State.
Sawant said a grand celebration of cinema in the picturesque State of Goa promises to be a mesmerising journey.
“The cinema has the power to evoke a multitude of emotions, inspire minds and challenge perspectives,” he maintained.
Sawant said the IFFI, over the years, has emerged as a “beacon of cinematic experience” and remarked that this year the festival promises to be different. Let us remember that cinema has the power to transform lives. It can ignite imagination and broaden horizons around us.”
Sawant said Goa, made the permanent venue of the IFFI in 2004, is a proud host of the festival.
IFFI is World's 14th biggest International Film Competition and Goa has been hosting the festival since 2004, he added.
“We are committed to providing all necessary support to make the festival a success. We want to make Goa a hub for filmmaking and the IFFI will help us in promoting that destination,” the Chief Minister said.
Sawant opined the Goan film industry has grown by leaps and bounds over the years and is now slowly stepping into the national scene.
Union Minister for Information and Broadcasting Anurag Thakur announced enhancing incentive for production of foreign movies in the country, hiking the limit for reimbursement of expenses incurred in the country as he inaugurated the 54th IFFI, while addressing a star-studded gathering after opening the 54th edition of IFFI at Dr Shyama Prasad Mukherjee Indoor Stadium, Taleigao.
The move was aimed at attracting medium and big budget international film projects to India, he said.
The paradigm shift in incentivising film production serves as a testimony to India’s commitment and support for artistic expression and reinforces its position as a preferred destination for cinematic endeavours, Thakur said.
The Union Minister said last year at the Cannes Film Festival, the central government introduced an incentive scheme for production of foreign films in India, offering reimbursement of up to 30 per cent of their expenses incurred in the country, capped at Rs 2.5 crore.
The scheme was announced with an aim to make India a favourite destination for foreign film makers, he said.
“We realised that given India’s size and vast potential, there was a need for higher incentive to attract medium and big budget international projects. Today, I am pleased to announce an increase in the incentive for foreign film production in India,” Thakur said.
“The maximum incentive would be now up to 40 per cent of the expenditure incurred with a raised limit of Rs 30 crore, exceeding USD 3.5 million. You can also get an additional 5 per cent bonus for significant Indian content,” he added.
Actors Madhuri Dixit, Shahid Kapoor, Pankaj Tripathi, Sunny Deol and filmmaker Karan Johar were present for the opening ceremony of the nine-day festival being held at different four venues in the State.
At the function, Thakur honoured Bollywood diva Madhuri Dixit with the ‘Special Recognition for Contribution to Bharatiya Cinema’ award.