Walking the Red Carpet at Cannes for the past 18 years, film industry veteran Ravi Kottarakara, Secretary, South Indian film Chamber of Commerce and producer, Ganesh Pictures, underscores the Film Festival’s significance in world cinema, and how the platform has evolved as a great springboard for new talent and discoveries
The International Festival de Cannes, which began in 1947, is now celebrating 75 years of existence. Since its inception, the festival has expanded and grown from strenth-to-strength, showcasing the best films and discovering new talent and bringing together film fraternity from across the world to watch, ponder, and debate on cinema art. Over the year, Cannes has become the most sought after platform to meet the top brains from world cinema, highly-skilled, and knowledgeable experts in the film craft business.
The magical aura of the film festival is such that attending amateur filmmakers get an opportunity to acquire a wealth of knowledge and experience at Cannes, and return as established top professionals. The festival acts as an excellent springboard for budding filmmakers. For the past 18 years, I’ve been regularly coming to the Cannes, and it stands out for me. I have got the opportunity to meet and learn from many outstanding professionals and legends attending the festival.
The Cannes Film Festival has an extensive programme divided into various sub-categories including film viewing, co-production, film market, diverse country stalls, and skill development. Its multi-faceted structure has something to offer to everybody who come here to quench their appetite for good cinema.
It is every film industry professional’s dream to have their film screened at Cannes. I was completely overwhelmed and awestruck by the sheer body of cinema artwork and craftsmanship at the Cannes
when my first film was included in the programme and I walked the red carpet here. Watching a movie and discussing it with eminent international filmmakers and cinema experts is the ultimate experience. Another highlight of the spectacular Cannes Film Festival is the the Marché du Film that attracts film buyers from all corners of the globe, and adds dynamism to the global film industry. This leading Film Market facilitates purchase of films in any genre and in any language, provided the content is distinctive and of high quality. Hundreds of filmmakers attend this event for not only networking but also acquire services and tools they need to hold negotiations and uncover new opportunities, and they are always rewarded with excellent discounts.
In terms of co-productions, many film producers sign incredible coproduction deals at Cannes, whether between countries or between leading film firms, and even aspiring amateurs have had the opportunity to meet with highly professional companies. Every time I go to Cannes, I have a fresh experience and gather valuable knowledge that I can apply in my job.
Co-productions will become more common, and many professions will profit financially. In India, the South theatres are now ruling the roost, producing blockbuster hits. The films with the highest box office receipts are from the south. They deliver excellent service and thoroughly delight the crowd. South will be able to create even more terrific works if the scope of joint cinematic cooperation between France and India is further expanded.
The fact that Cannes is celebrating 75 years and that India, the world’s largest film producer, is the country of emphasis is a wonderful feeling. The collaboration between France and India in the sphere of filmmaking will push the medium forward.