Lesser-known indie films will now come under the spotlight

Nov 11, 2017, 09:28 IST | Shunashir Sen

A platform that was launched recently hopes to bring lesser-known movies under the spotlight

Not too many people in this country can put their hand on their heart and say that they have never downloaded content without paying for it. "In fact, I read somewhere recently that India is ranked third in the world when it comes to watching pirated material," says Kunal Jhaveri (42), who recently launched Filamnt, a platform that gives a leg-up to indie films.

A scene from Lyari Notes
A scene from Lyari Notes

He adds, "People think they have a legitimate right to download content for free. But they need to understand that a filmmaker deserves to be remunerated for the effort and the cost he or she puts into making a movie."

Effecting this change in mindset is the basis behind Filamnt, which hopes to bring non-Bollywood movies out of the shadows of that monstrously huge industry. With that in mind, the firm will screen Lyari Notes, an Indo-Pak documentary film on how music can become a tool for resistance, at a Bandra venue this evening.

Miriam Chandy Menacherry
Miriam Chandy Menacherry

Jhaveri adds that his bigger vision is to simultaneously screen different indie films at 100 venues across the country. "I think it’s possible through technology, wherein movies can be screened in a secure environment without the filmmaker having to worry about piracy," he says.

Kunal Jhaveri
Kunal Jhaveri

He also says, "The government, too, should recognise that these films need to be promoted and offered funding. Unless a proper ecosystem is created, the growth will be incremental, not in leaps and bounds."

But Miriam Chandy Menacherry, who made Lyari Notes with Maheen Zia, feels that a certain momentum has picked up in the indie movie industry. "It’s an interesting time.

The whole thing was really niche when I started out, but now you find narratives from the subcontinent opening at film fests the world over," she says.

Nonetheless, Jhaveri maintains that people need to be made more aware that such films outside of theatres do exist. "The main factors are marketing and promotion. Only if more and more people watch indie films will venues be interested in screening them, and that’s the key."

On: Today, 6 pm
At: The Cuckoo Club, Bandra West
Call: 9619962969
Cost: '249

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