Union Information and Broadcasting Minister Ambika Soni will skip the Cannes film festival this year. Instead, she will send India's top filmmakers — Govind Nihalani, Nagesh Kukunoor, Manmohan Shetty, and Mrinal Sen — to showcase the country’s cinema.
Soni’s willingness to take a backseat, however, is restricted only to the trip, ministry insiders said. For, when it came to designing the profile of the India pavilion at Cannes, Soni was in the thick of things.
She was personally involved in the most minute detailing and apparently insisted that the pavilion reflect the ambience of “Incredible India”, the country’s vast cultural heritage and at the same time portray the boom that the film industry has seen.
For the first time ever, India’s representation at Cannes is to identify areas of co-operation between Indian and foreign film industry. Sources said the ministry had sought some help from Assocham for the purpose.
The India pavilion at Cannes will be projecting several key aspects of the Indian film industry through different workshops on mobile entertainment, how India as preferred destination for foreign film crews, on Intellectual Property Right and the Copy Right Regime, new-age entertainment platforms and India’s plans to become the most preferred animation hub in Asia.
The workshop on animation for instance will include representatives of Walt Disney and the UK-based Talking lens.