'Mumbai needs to emerge as an investment-friendly city'

Updated: Nov 02, 2019, 07:41 IST | Mohar Basu | Mumbai

Producers Guild CEO celebrates Mumbai's inclusion in UNESCO's list of most creative cities; sees it as an opportunity to further attract filmmakers

Christopher Nolan had shot for portions of his next, Tenet in Mumbai. Pic/Suresh Karkera
Christopher Nolan had shot for portions of his next, Tenet in Mumbai. Pic/Suresh Karkera

A day after Mumbai found a spot in UNESCO's creative cities list in the film category, Kulmeet Makkar, CEO of the Producers Guild of India, calls the title a defining one. "It was important for Mumbai to get this recognition. We have a film culture that spans 100 years. Across the world, our films are perceived as brand ambassadors of India. This title sends the message that Mumbai is [India's] film centre," Makkar says.

Pointing out that following Christopher Nolan's shooting stint in India, the government is keen to promote similar endeavours, he adds, "There will be the creation of tourism avenues, and better employment structures. Mumbai needs to emerge as an investment-friendly city. People are curious to explore the city. Facilitating a simpler process [to conduct] shooting is something that the government will work on. We are striving to reduce the number of permissions [required to conduct shoots]." He also suggests that the government plans to give incentives to foreign producers.

Guild

Makkar says that the constantly upgraded technology employed in films, and the rise of OTT platforms have increased the investments made into the business. "UNESCO's title comes at a time when [the scope for employment] has quadrupled, owing to the OTT platforms. We need to simplify processes. For instance, if we were to shoot at a railway station, accessing each inch of the station would require a different set of permissions, because it could be under the jurisdiction of different police stations. The producer or on-ground staff needs to engage with multiple stakeholders. It is necessary to create a single-window process for content makers."

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