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Odishatv Bureau

Information and Broadcasting Minister Anurag Thakur on Wednesday inaugurated the India Pavilion at Cannes Film Market ‘Marche du Film’. With an aim to make India a favorite destination for foreign film makers, Thakur today unveiled two schemes to incentivize shooting of foreign films and foreign co-productions with India. The two schemes viz Incentive Scheme for Audio-Visual Co-production and Incentive Scheme Shooting of foreign films in India are aimed at unleashing the potential of Indian media and entertainment industry.

Talking about the aspects of the incentives, Thakur informed that for official co-productions, international film production companies can claim a reimbursement of up to 30% on Qualifying Expenditure in India subject to a maximum of Rs 2 crore. Foreign films shooting in India can claim an additional 5% bonus up to a maximum of Rs 50 lakhs (USD 65,000) as additional reimbursement would be granted for employing 15% or more manpower in India.  The schemes will provide an impetus to, global collaborations with India and attract investment from foreign film makers and help promote India as a filming destination, the Minister said.

Expounding the deep social roots of Indian cinema, Thakur said that creativity, excellence, and innovation in Indian cinema have developed hand in hand with sensitive treatment of subjects of social and national importance. “While reflecting the values, beliefs, and experiences of the Indian people, Indian cinema has also showcased their hopes, dreams and achievements. While being rooted in Indian culture, the Indian film industry has grown to acquire a universal character. And while preserving our age old stories, the Indian film makers are innovating in their art of storytelling through use of technology”, the Minister said.

“Indian cinema is not only the story of a 6000 year old civilisation, not only the story of 1.3 billion tales but also the story of human talent, triumph and the trajectory of New India narrated through your lens” , the Minister remarked.

Speaking on the strong intent of government to make India a favorite filming destination, Thakur said, “We have a strong intellectual property regime, and the digital medium now complements the other more established modes of consumption and dissemination such as theatres and movies. This has brought about a democratisation of consumer choice like never before, and our government is intent on preserving this via support to the creative industries.”

Crediting India’s film restoration work for its scale, he said the government has embarked on world’s largest film restoration project under the National Film Heritage Mission and as part of this drive, 2200 movies across languages and genres will be restored to their former glory while releasing the official poster of 53rd edition of International Film Festival of India at the India Pavilion.

Speaking on the occasion, actor Tamanna Bhatia said that India has contributed to the global film industry for many years and now in 75th year of independence the partnering of Cannes Film Festival with India is truly iconic. 

Actor Nawazuddin Siddiqui added to the sentiment saying that India is a land of many stories and these stories from grassroots are worthy of global prominence. 

Actor Deepika Padukone commented that this was a proud moment that India was the country in spotlight at Cannes on 75th anniversary of independence, adding that Indian cinema is at the cusp of greatness and this achievement at Cannes is only a beginning. 

While Shekhar Kapur said India was a land of stories and now Indian culture will become a predominant culture in cinema as the west plateaus, actress Pooja Hegde emphatically commented that she was there as part of none other but brand India and it was an honour further adding that the fact that India was Country of Honour was proof that India was making the right noises. 

R. Madhavan, A.R. Rahman, Mame Khan and Secretary of I&B Apurva Chandra were also present on the occasion.

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