Having worked in a number of independent films, actress Sayani Gupta whose films have travelled to film festivals all across the globe, says when it comes to funding, projects on foreign shores have tremendous support from their governments and other bodies as compared to those in India.
Sayani was here to present the film “The Hungry” along with the director Bornila Chatterjee at the sixth edition of Dharamshala International Film Festival.
She says in places like Europe, it’s easy to get grants but in India, a monetary return is an obvious expectation.
“It happens almost everywhere whenever you are trying to gather money and you don’t have the resources. It is hard for everyone when they are starting out but I think one thing that we lack is support from the government or support for funding, ” Sayani told IANS here.
“Like all foreign funds that are there it’s much more… especially for Europe and places, it’s easier to get the grants, there people are willing to give you money for whatever you want to make.. whereas in India, they would want some sort of monetary return,” added the “Jagga Jasoos” actress.
Drawing a comparison between filmmaking during the 1970s and early 1980s when filmmakers like Govind Nihalani were taking the Indian audience by storm, Sayani, who has projects like “Margarita with a Straw” and “Parched” to her credit, threw light on how it’s all about “a business model when it is associated to any kind of filmmaking here”.
“But in the West there is much more excess and temperament-wise there is importance given to the arts and I feel that this is totally we should look into. In the 1970s and the 1980s when the whole parallel cinema movement took place, independent films were constantly funded… which is why Saeed Mirza, Kundan Shah, Govind Nihalani, these people could make their films.
“There was a constant force behind these filmmakers saying that we are giving you the money, just make whatever you want. Now there is nothing. Now you either have to go to studios or constantly be like ‘who has money’,” Sayani added.
Sayani believes everyone is looking at a business model so it gets “tougher”.
The four-day Dharmashala International Film Festival 2017 ends on Sunday.
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