In this Industry Spotlight with Creative First, Prithul Kumar, Joint Secretary (Films), Ministry of Information & Broadcasting (MIB) and Managing Director, NFDC joined Lohita Sujith, Sr. Director, Copyright & Digital Economy, Motion Picture Association to discuss MIB’s new initiatives in the Indian Film Sector.
Prithul began the conversation by highlighting the growing consumer demand for content in multiple languages. He noted the potential of Indian content to traverse international markets.
The conversation then moved on to one of the most awaited film events of the year, the International Film Festival of India (IFFI). The festival this year will feature gala premiers, and a well-curated program. The 16th edition of the Film Bazaar will feature 300 pieces of curated content, and a VFX & tech pavilion.
The Ministry is committed to support filmmakers in their pursuit to achieve higher content standards and increased productions through incentives, promotion of co-production agreements between countries, revamp of the Film Facilitation Office (FFO) portal and industry friendly amendments to the Cinematograph Act, 1952.
Expanding on the amendments, he touched upon modernization of film certification and the provision of recertification of film for airing on television. He also mentioned how the amendments aim to curb piracy both in theatre and the internet.
Prithul also highlighted the introduction of production and tax incentives in 2022 to promote creative pursuits for mid-sized films. Bigger budget films, needless to say, also need a revision in their incentives and this is something that the Ministry is focussed on as well. The single window clearance process will become more streamlined, and he stated that within the next year, the FFO portal will process all incentives online and there will no longer be a need to submit documents in person.
He believes in the coming years, the Animation, Visual Effects, Gaming, and Comics (AVGC) sector will be to India what the Information Technology (IT) sector was in the 1990s. MIB’s support to the AVGC policy is a step in the right direction to advance the sector and upskill talent.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Prithul Kumar is an accomplished civil servant with extensive experience in various domains. He is presently working as Joint Secretary (Films), Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, Government of India and Managing Director, NFDC. He comes from the 2000 batch of Indian Railway Traffic Service, a prestigious Group A civil service cadre of the Central Government. Previously he was the Executive Director (computerization and information systems) at the Railway Board. He looks after all policy and administrative matters related to the Films sector in India, including certification, education, archival, production, and also the government’s scheme for promotion of film sector. Apart from his busy work schedule, he is an avid movie enthusiast and enjoys watching films in his free time.