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India Pavilion at Cannes - A home away from home

May 16, 2011 11:20:33 AM IST
Rajesh Kumar Singh, Glamsham Editorial
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The main venue of the Cannes film Festival the Palais des Festivals et des Congres, commonly called the Palais, is located next to the Mediterranean sea beach, in the middle of what is called the Croissant, probably because of the shape of a few kilometres long Cannes beach front. It is flanked on both sides by 'the village' consisting of the pavilions of different countries participating in the Cannes Film Market. A part of this consists of a jetty where about a hundred big size yachts are anchored, sporting banners of major film distribution, sales, and marketing companies. You can also notice huge banners of big Hollywood studios hanging atop the best of the Cannes hotel lining the Croissant.

India has its flag fluttering high over one of the pavilions in the village. It is organised and managed by the NFDC team led by Neena Lath Gupta.

Mr. D. P. Reddy, Joint Secretary, Ministry of Information and Broadcasting (Government of India), officially inaugurated the pavilion on 12th May, 2011. It is a major networking and meeting point for the 'Indian delegation'. Everyone from India who is present at Cannes is accorded the privilege of being its part. You will find all the familiar Indian faces in the daily networking cocktails organised by the pavilion, from young upcoming filmmakers to the established ones like Anurag Kahsyap, Rakeysh Mehra, Bobby Bedi, and others. The Indian Pavilion has tied up with other countries and organises country specific networking events. It also provides basic but very important office services to Indians - like table space, video screening, and Internet access without any charge in an 'open house' environment. It really feels like home away from home at the pavilion. The officials are friendly and supportive. Visitors are warmly treated to drinks and Indian snacks.

An industry association used to organise the India Pavilion in the earlier editions of Cannes. This year the task is assigned to the NFDC and the general opinion is that it is better managed and organised than before. In various networking events Indian filmmakers have been meeting producers and government officials from Australia, Canada, France, Israel, Quatar, and other countries. In these meetings, presentations are made, panel discussions are held, and co-production possibilities are discussed and explored. Binger Filmlab, and Prime Exchange, who are associated with NFDC's Film Bazaar and Co-Production market in IFFI, Goa, are also organising sessions and panel discussions to educate and enlighten Indian producers about how to walk the co-production road. Everyone is looking forward to Incredible India Party, which will be held today, 16th May, 2011.

(Rajesh Kumar Singh is Editorial Consultant for Festivals and Markets for He is a filmmaker, critic and market analyst)


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