Kapoor, the joint managing director at Balaji Telefilms, launched Institute Of Creative Excellence (ICE) in Mumbai in 2010 to provide industry-related courses and to bridge the gap between demand for and supply of professionals. "We realised that 40 percent of applications to our Mumbai institute came from the north, and since Delhi is the hub of north India, we decided to have a set-up here," Anurag Gupta, CEO, ICE, told IANS.
ICE, expected to open in Delhi's South Extension area in June, offers full-time and part-time courses in acting, cinematography, direction, editing, production, scriptwriting, sound recording, modelling and VFX.
"Being a production house, Balaji had always gone out to scout for talent in various colleges, and then trained them to be ready to join the industry. So we thought if we could open our own media school and train aspirants regularly, we could even contribute to the industry. That's how the thought process for ICE came about," said Gupta.
ICE's Mumbai facility is set amidst 13 Balaji studios where some of their most popular serials and films are shot. That provides students get live exposure. But will Delhi students lose out on that edge? "For certain projects, students will have to spend some time in our Mumbai campus for live exposure," explained Gupta.
The courses at ICE are priced between Rs.100,000 to Rs.300,000, while its programmes for kids cost between Rs.4,000 and Rs.15,000. Applicants are required to go through a rigorous, three-level admission procedure of the institute.
Ekta, popular for producing shows like "Kyunki Saas Bhi Kabhi Bahu Thi" and "Bade Achhe Lagte Hain" and movies like "Ragini MMS" and "The Dirty Picture", herself is actively involved in its activities. "This is Ekta's brainchild. She has given a lot of thought to the curriculum and is on the advisory board. She is highly inspirational," added Gupta.