Kerala State Chalachitra Academy to launch online film magazine, mobile screening unit

Curtains came down on the 17th International Film Festival of Kerala (IFFK) with a host of State promises to cinema-goers on Friday. An archive of Malayalam classic films in the wintry environs of Munnar, mobile digital movie theatres, and panchayat-level facilities for mini film festivals are among the promises.

Minister for Cinema K.B. Ganesh Kumar, addressing the concluding function here, said the response to classic Malayalam films like Kanchanaseetha during the festival had prompted the government to initiate steps for an archiving facility for such movies in Munnar. Discussions are in progress with the Revenue Department for land for the project, which would see negatives of all available Malayalam classics being preserved.

A proposal for the same would shortly be submitted to the Centre.

The Minister said the design and estimate for a 30-seater bus, complete with digital sound and modern projection systems, to be rented out to film societies across the State to screen movies in villages were ready. The mobile theatre will be designed to cater to about 100 people. Plans are afoot to distribute pamphlets with details of the movies being screened. The facility could be used by film societies to conduct village-level film festivals.

Besides, there is a proposal to find 15 cents of land in panchayats, which could be given on lease for at least 25 years to the Kerala State Chalachitra Academy, where mini-theatres could be constructed and film festivals held, in an effort to take festival movies to the grassroots.

The Academy will shortly launch an online film magazine, with the objective of providing new general filmmakers a window to the world with their works. The magazine would be ready by January 30, while the academy website is being redesigned to provide accommodation facilities to women delegates in order to facilitate more female participation in the IFFK.

A technical director will be appointed shortly to ensure that there are no technical glitches for the next edition of the event, which would enable delegates of this year to merely give online the number of their delegate passes to acquire passes for the next event.

Chief Minister Oommen Chandy, inaugurating the function, said the government would extend all possible support and help to the development of cinema in the State. This year’s festival concluded without any major controversies or complaints, he said, pointing out that cooperation of the public was the single-most contributing factor to the success of the 17 IFFK.

Acclaimed Malian filmmaker Souleymane Cisse was the guest of honour.