Italy Rolls out Red Carpet to Indian Filmmakers

By Pickle  July 6, 2020
Italy Rolls out Red Carpet to Indian Filmmakers, Pickle Media

Italy is the partner country in the five-day eFICCI FRAMES beginning July 7. Because of the Covid pandemic Italian institutions and producers will participate virtually with Indian M&E industry professionals. Pickle chats with Roberto Stabile, Head of International Department of ANICA (Italian Film Audiovisual Multimedia Industries Association) & ITA (Italian Trade Agency) Audiovisual Desks Coordinator who has been instrumental forging new partnership between India and Italy in the audiovisual space

It is great that business is coming back and Italy is the partner country with FICCI FRAMES? What is your immediate objective?

Our objective is to get to know each other better, so that we can develop future collaborations in the audiovisual sector: we would like to set up coproductions, sell films and TV series to Indian distributors and television and bring Indian productions to Italy to highlight our beautiful territory by helping them take advantage of our fiscal incentives. Only by meeting and discussing issues as we do on
occasions such as FICCI can we understand how we can collaborate to our reciprocal satisfaction.

How did you decide to become partner country for FICCI FRAMES?

It is very important for our international relationship with India. FICCI FRAMES is the best place to start our collaboration with India and bring producers of two countries together.

What’s the current COVID scenario in Italy? We read that things are getting normal, shootings have begun and theatres opened?

We have finally started production again, but we have to respect
extremely complicated and rigid protocols, it will take some time to
bring us back up to speed. Many cinemas are still closed although they have been authorised to open again. The cost of opening the cinemas half empty to allow distancing imposed by the security measures means that they are not economically viable. People are also still very careful and don’t like the idea of sitting in closed spaces next to strangers. It is also true that after months of lockdown they want to go out, walk, meet friends more than shut themselves up to watch a film. Traditionally cinemas in Italy are empty during summer so to see the cinemas open again will have to wait for autumn.

How would you like to give shape to the India-Italy collaboration in the filmed entertainment space?

We have to make sure that our producers and authors meet and discuss ideas and allow that through this process projects are developed together so that new business will grow. It is a long but natural process which can’t be forced but helped and nurtured, with time we will have some interesting results.

Where is the India-Italy relationship at this point of time?

Politically, we have very good relationship with India. Unfortunately, we have few collaborations in the audiovisual space. So we will start from FICCI FRAMES to push our producers to know exactly what they can do
with Indian producers. And also to explain, what Italy offers in terms of ideas, projects and funds for collaboration. The best way is to connect Indian and Italian producers. We must dream together, tweet together, discuss projects and ideas (virtually for the time being)
and we will get results. Also, we want to push people doing something
because we truly believe that we can make great projects working together in the film industry.

What is it that Italy offers to Indian co-producers?

In our new law we have incentives and funding for collaboration. We offer huge support for people coming to shoot movies from India. They can come and shoot without any kind of co-production. We have opened Italian doors to Indian filmmakers.

India has signed Co-production Treaty with Italy over a decade back. Why it has not taken off ?

This is the problem of political bureaucracy in India and alo in Italy. We need to work more closer than ever before. We need to add streaming and animation in the coproduction treaty. We will have a deliberation on animation. In fact, we can begin our new collaboration with animation.

How do you like to see collaboration going forward and do you see more collboarion during IFFI and Film Bazaar 2020?

I am sure that all this could start by bringing some important Indian
productions to Italy, I think this is the first important step to take
and also the easiest. I am ready to increase our collaboration with all
the most important cinema events in India starting with those mentioned
and I would be honoured to organise a Focus dedicated to India during the next Venice Production Bridge at the Venice International Film Festival.

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