With over a thousand days of film shooting happening in Goa, suddenly the tiny western state has come in sharp focus globally. Whether it's a Bond film or a Yashraj, film makers are making a beeline for a piece of the cake. The turnaround is sharp and sudden. The recent news is that Goa is considering granting tax rebate or money back to films shooting there. If this happens this would be a real progressive step by the Government and a unique one in India. There are many regions in the world who promote themselves by organizing film festivals, offering soaps but an initiative of this kind would be the first of its kind in India.
DUM MAARO DUM
When the international film festival of India shifted to Goa, some sections of the film industry were up in arms, why. Questions were raised that Goa had no film industry, no film culture, no infrastructure and almost nothing to support the festival. All this stands changed today were one to look at what's happening in Goa recently. Every single studio of Mumbai is exploring possibilities to shift to Goa. Every single film planned considers shooting in Goa.
Despite setbacks like DUM MAARO DUM and the recent ANJUNAA BEACH the Goa Government run Entertainment Society of Goa has followed an aggressive policy to persuade the film makers to shoot in Goa. ALL THE BEST, GUZAARISH, KHELEIN HUM JEE JAAN SEY, PLAYERS, GOLMAAL series, LADIES V/S RICKY BAHL and now SINGHAM stand as tall examples of immense possibilities in Goa. With so many film shoots taking place, studios being set up, the film festival finally finding its roots there, Goa stands to launch itself globally today.
Film makers know Goa today for many reasons. The feature film directors connect with the film festival. The short and documentary film makers consider it their Mecca and virtually make an annual pilgrimage to the Short Film Center. The NFDC organized Film Bazaar which was almost defunct in the past invites tremendous response now. Screen writers know Goa as an inspiring, peaceful location for their imaginations to run wild. Many arrive in Goa and stay for days to complete scripts. Goa is also fun for the film industry. Right from Shahrukh and Hrithik to Amitabh Bachchan and many other actors are often in Goa to celebrate with their families.
CEO of Entertainment Society of Goa, Manoj Srivastava, who is largely seen behind this turnaround, is hopeful that the final launch with studios and other facilities would be smooth as Goa is now ready for cinema. 'We have a clutch of upcoming film makers and other professionals and given the opportunities they will perform at the global level. Goans have a natural flair for arts and Goa would be a wonderful breeding ground for the cinematic art.'
Most film makers who have shot in Goa are returning to the state with their new projects and if the facilities like post production studios etc. come up they would like to stay back and complete their films in Goa itself. The Government is aware of this, says Srivastava.