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Beyond the cleavage

A 2012 wishlist for Hindi cinema aims at improving the quality of movies with a greater emphasis on social issues. Subhash K Jha speaks to experts who want to see more offbeat films, original scripts, small theatres, and so on

Slideshow: Trend-setting films of 2011


Ooh la la: Vidya Balan in Dirty Picture

Shabana Azmi (Actress, Activist)
Subsided tickets

>> Passing of the Copyright bill in Parliament that will entitle music directors and lyricists to get 12.5 per cent of profits that music companies and producers make when the song is used OUTSIDE the film. This is a standard practice in the world but in India the lyricist and music directors are made to waive off that clause.

>> A greater emphasis on the script is needed.

>> We need small theatres with subsidised rates of tickets for offbeat films. For years I've been saying that the National Film Development Corporation of India (NFDC) should not produce films only to rot in cans. Instead, NFDC should guarantee theatrical release and distribution for offbeat films. This would give a huge fillip to films that don't have stars or the funds for marketing. That is the greatest service the government can do for the promotion of offbeat films.

>> I'd like to see the return of the lip sync songs. Hindi cinema's USP is the song. I've been listening to songs from the '60s and '70s, where you can actually hear the words and the music works to enhance them. Hindi cinema is popular abroad mainly due to its songs. Nowadays, songs are only used in the background like in the west. But why should we give up the one thing that is uniquely our own? I think fresh innovative ways of making the hero and heroine lip-sync a romantic song, without running around trees or an item number is the need of the hour.

>> I'd like to see more women-oriented films succeed at the box office.


Message: Filhaal, a film on surrogacy

Pankaja Thakur (CEO, Censor Board Of Film Certification)
Films for children

>> I would like to see more films made for children.

>> I would also like to see patriotic films being made because youngsters know so little about our history and
culture.

>> I would like to see a less divided film industry in 2012, so it can take a united stand on issues. The industry should get more organised and give Hollywood a run for its money.

>> Our films are either fluffy or dark. A lot of goodness and sunshine are around us.
A lot of people have dedicated their lives for others. Films should show that aspect of life too.

>> I would want the industry to support new comers and take care of senior artistes. Both sections are neglected . It says a lot about the moral and social health of the industry.

>> While cleavages look nice I'd like it if there was less commodification of women.


Film with a purpose: Stanley ka Dabba

Prasoon Joshi (Poet, Lyricist)
Quality work

>> More conviction and encouragement for individual artistic expression.

>> Marketing should take a backseat and films should rely more on content.

>> Nuances should be paid more attention to in our films.

>> Audiences should support quality work.

>> We should have new faces in the film industry, who can connect to the audience. 

Rahul Dholakia (Filmmaker)
No censorship

>> I'd like to see a chain of Indie cinema theatres.

>> I'd like to see more original scripts.

>> I'd like to be able to screen films without intermission.

>> I'd like to get rid of censorship.

>> I'd like to make Mumbai more shooting-friendly, with easy permits and no hassles from political unions.

Amit Khanna (Chairman Reliance Entertainment)
More melody

>> We need better scripts, which means we need original and engaging stories. 

>> The novelty of item songs is wearing thin. Let melody return.

>> Piracy in the digital world takes away at least 30 per cent of audiences. The message is: less piracy,
please.   

>> And finally, something that makes everything worth it more hits, please.    

Ashoke Pandit (Filmmaker, Bollywood spokesman)
End piracy

>> Would like to see piracy eradicated.

>> Lessen the entertainment tax. It's almost as if the government wants to punish the film industry for
entertaining the people of the country.

>> I'd like to see better studio facilities.

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