Film Fed boycotts IFFI Film Bazaar

It blamed CII for 'sidelining the apex body of producers in film industry'.

india Updated: Nov 25, 2005 19:12 IST

Barely hours after it was thrown open for a ten-day long film fiesta, the Goa International Film Festival of India (IFFI) suffered a setback with the apex body of film producers in the country boycotting the much-touted Film Bazaar, which seeks to promote market for Indian films abroad.

Film Federation of India (FFI) asked its members not to attend the bazaar, which was inaugurated this morning by Union Urban Development and Culture Minister S Jaipal Reddy.

The FFI blamed the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII), the main organiser of the bazaar, for "sidelining the apex body of producers in the film industry". "A few individuals are trying to ignore FFI," its president and Telugu producer Adi Seshagiri Rao said.

The decision to boycott the bazaar was taken at the executive committee meeting of FFI held on Tuesday,Rao said.

FFI has already complained to the Directorate of Film Festivals (DFF) and Information and Broadcasting Minister Priyaranjan Dasmunsi on the issue, he added.

DFF Director Afzal Amanulla, however, said he had not received any such complaint.

Bobby Bedi, CII's National Entertainment Committee chairman and producer, said the boycott will not affect the bazaar "in any way".

According to FFI, the government did not invite the organisation for the management of the bazaar this year, instead handed over the responsibility to CII. The bazaar, an integral part of IFFI, was earlier organised solely by the state-run National Film Development Corporation (NFDC).

"For the last few years, it is being observed that FFI is being ignored by the government of India by not taking into confidence its views and suggestions for the film industry and a few individuals from the industry having self motives and vested interest are trying to misrepresent the unity of the film industry," said a press statement byRao.

"Film Bazaar is the most important part of the festival and anybody who is against the bazaar is against films," said Yash Chopra, Bollywood producer and head of the FICICI's entertainment division.

FFI,Bedi said, was of "no consequence" as most of the films sold abroad at the bazaar had been financed by banks and other institutions.

The Film Federation claims a membership of 90 per cent of producers in the country and the entire network of distributors and exhibitors. Film Bazaar is organised during the IFFI to provide an ideal networking platform for presenting and promoting films and exploring business opportunities. The participants of the bazaar this year include the Indian Film Exporters Association, Children's Film Society of India, Industrial Development Bank of India, Films Division, NFDC, Prasar Bharti and the French Embassy.

First Published: Nov 25, 2005 14:42 IST