admin   May 18, 2022

India, land of beautiful locales and great talents, has reopened its doors for filming in India for global producers and studios. Film Facilitation Office (FFO), set up by the Ministry of Information & Broadcasting in the National Film Development Corporation (NFDC), is currently accepting online applications for foreign producers to shoot in India

There are few countries that can compete with India’s geographical and cultural diversity when it comes to filming in India. From the lofty snow-capped peaks of the Himalayas to the sand dunes of Rajasthan’s Thar Desert in North India and the sandy beaches of Goa in the south, one can easily replicate the backdrops of Mandarin China in Kolkata’s downtown, Afghanistan in the rugged mountains of Ladakh, Jamaica in feisty Goa, and Arabian nights in Jodhpur.

India is the world’s largest film producer, producing approximately 2,000 films per year. Its sheer size and the number of films released each year have caused the world to take notice of Indian cinema. It is now well established that a compelling story with universal themes has the ability to transcend borders. Indian films are made in a variety of locations throughout the country, and each of these filmmaking cities serves as a cinematic hub for one major language.

Mumbai, India’s film capital, is home to the Hindi film industry. Marathi-language films are also produced in the city, which is inextricably linked to Indian cinema history (along with neighbouring Pune). Chennai, Kolkata, Hyderabad, Thiruvananthapuram, Bangalore, Bhubaneswar, Guwahati, Patna, and Delhi NCR are other major Indian film production cities.

The Indian AVGC story is reaching a crescendo as international studios expand their presence in India, making it a hub for virtual production, post-production, visual effects, and graphics, and as storytellers weave intricate narratives with universal appeal.

India also has world-class production and post-production facilities, as well as skilled labour, and when these benefits are combined with a transparent and responsive government-backed system for obtaining various shooting permits, it has the potential to greatly enhance the beauty of filming in India.

As the world’s largest filmmaking country emerges from the COVID-19 pandemic, it intends to focus on making it easier for international filmmakers to explore this beautiful country while also utilising low-cost and highly skilled film production professionals to add global appeal to their stories.

As a result of some serious efforts put in by FFO, as many as 138 international projects (Feature Films, TV/Web shows and series) from across 33 countries have been accorded permissions to film in India. Out of these, 13 projects were granted official coproduction status by the Ministry of I&B.

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Film Making Centres of India

admin   September 14, 2020

India is probably the world’s most culturally and linguistically diverse nation. Its people speak 22 different languages, besides hundreds of dialects. No wonder then that India is a land of many cinematic traditions. The 1800-odd movies that the country annually produces are made in a number of languages, each with its own distinct literature, history, theatre and music.

Indian films are produced in several centres around the country. Each of these filmmaking cities serves as the hub of cinema in one prominent language.

Mumbai, regarded as India’s movie capital, hosts the Hindi film industry that has a pan-Indian footprint. Marathi-language films are also produced in the city (besides neighbouring Pune) that is inextricably intertwined with the history of Indian cinema.

Chennai, Kolkata, Hyderabad, Thiruvananthapuram, Bangalore, Bhubaneswar and Guwahati are the other major Indian cities where films are produced.

While the distribution of these so-called ‘regional’ films is largely limited within the territories for which they are made – they do not have the nationwide reach of Bollywood blockbusters – they add immensely to the depth and range of Indian cinema.

MUMBAI, Maharashtra

The centre-point of Indian film industry, Mumbai, popularly Bollywood, is a land of cinema. From commercial grandeur to arthouse movies, there is no short of cinema in the capital city of Maharashtra

The bustling western Indian metropolis is the heart of the Indian movie industry, producing nearly 200 films a year in the Hindi language. It also, along with the nearby city of Pune, produces Marathi-language films, which, in the silent era and beyond, thrived in the hands of pioneering stalwarts like V Shantaram and Bhalji Pendharkar, among others. A large chunk of the Hindi films produced in Mumbai constitute what is usually described as Bollywood, a label used for an old cinematic tradition built on a formulaic and crowd-pleasing mix of melodrama, romance, moral conflict and music. This extravagant form of storytelling is extremely popular in the other filmmaking centres as well. However, it is by no means the only kind of cinema that emerges from Mumbai.

The city has always had two distinct streams of filmmaking – one aimed at providing glitzy and emotionally satisfying entertainment to the masses; the other designed to appeal to a niche audience with a taste for more realistic movies. There have of course been occasions when these two separate approaches have merged in the same film and resulted in timeless classics such as Mother India, Mughal-e-Azam, Deewar and Lagaan. The A-list Mumbai cinema stars, objects of adulation around the country and by the Indian Diaspora, power the mainstream Bollywood industry. Mumbai played a key role in the evolution of parallel films in the late 1960s and 1970s,thanks to the efforts of directors like Shyam Benegal and Govind Nihalani. Its filmmakers also drove the global spread of the Bollywood narrative idiom in the aftermath of major commercial successes in the past decade and a half. A breed of younger Mumbai filmmakers, migrants to the city from different parts of the country, have scripted a new kind of popular cinema that blends social awareness, aesthetic clarity and stylistic accessibility. Several of these films have travelled to international festivals in recent years while finding takers on the domestic distribution circuit as well.


Located down south of India, Chennai is the birthplace of Tamil, Telugu, Malayalam and Kannada film industries. While the last three moved to their respective neighbouring states, Tamil movies continue to be made in this city, thus making it a sought after destination of movie making in the country

Chennai (formerly Madras) is home to the hugely successful and productive Tamil movie industry, which has, over the decades, given Indian cinema a few of its biggest and most abiding stars. The Tamil movie industry has seen film production since the mid 1910s. It has constantly kept pace with the growth of the rest of Indian cinema. In fact, at several junctures in its history, it even set the pace for others to follow, especially in matters of technology and film production practices. Tamil cinema has a following not only in the state of Tamil Nadu but also in the other southern states of India, besides among the Tamil expatriate community across the world. Hindi versions of Tamil box office hits as well as bilingual productions mounted in Chennai have been successful around India ever since 1948’s Chandralekha opened the sluice-gates for nationally distributed films from this part of India.

The dominant strain of Tamil movies, like that of Hindi popular cinema, hinges on the crowd-pulling power of its male superstars, notably veterans Rajinikanth and Kamal Haasan. A new generation of stars have continued the tradition. But in the past as well as in recent times, the industry has seen a steady output of films from young directors working outside the conventional star system with great success. For audiences around the country, Mani Ratnam, who also makes films in Hindi, is one of the better known Chennai directors.


Kolkata has given the world some of the best movies and filmmakers. Right from the black and white era, Bengali films carried the stamp of reality and social awareness, and the flag still flies high.

Bengali-language cinema, known the world over for the celebrated masterpieces of Satyajit Ray, is produced in Kolkata from studios located largely in Tollygunge in the city’s southern suburbs.

Many of the pioneers of early Indian cinema worked in this city in the silent era. In fact, Hiralal Sen is known to have made films here well before India’s officially recognized first full-fledged fiction film, D.G. Phalke’s Raja Harishchandra, was screened in Mumbai. Commercial Bengali cinema has thrived right since the silent era, barring a few troughs in the 1980s and 1990s caused by the death of its most luminous superstar Uttam Kumar and the retirement of his on-screen partner Suchitra Sen.But it is for the critically acclaimed works of three masters – Ray, Ritwik Ghatak and Mrinal Sen – that Kolkata enjoys global fame. Directors such as Tapan Sinha and Tarun Majumdar built their careers around films that struck a fine balance between artistic merit and commercial potential.

More than their counterparts in any of the other film production centres of India, screenwriters and directors in Kolkata, especially those that work in the non-mainstream sphere, continue to draw inspiration primarily from literature. It is a tradition that dates back to the silent era, a period during which Bengali cinema, unlike other cinemas that were beginning to take roots in that period, produced social satires and dramas adapted from literary works rather than mythological epics.


Not just the land, but its films too are known for their spicy nature. It will be no exaggeration if we call Hyderabad the capital of commercial cinema. For, most of India’s colourful and costly movies are made here.

Hyderabad is the hub of Telugu cinema, which is one of the most prolific and commercially consistent of all the cinemas of India. Between Telengana and Andhra Pradesh, the two separate states that the erstwhile united Andhra Pradesh has recently been split into, there are 2800 movie halls, the highest in any single region of India. On several occasions in the last decade, Telugu films accounted for more releases in a year than cinema in any other Indian language, including Hindi. Many big-budget Hindi and Tamil films are official remakes of Telugu hits, a sure measure of the mass appeal of movies made in Hyderabad. In terms of artistic quality and global recognition, Telugu cinema may lag behind films made in Malayalam and Tamil, but it continues to be the most robust of the southern industries.Hyderabad has some of India’s best film production studios. They have been set up by established names of the Telugu movie industry – men such as B. N. Reddy, L.V. Prasad, Akkineni Nageswara Rao and D. Rama Naidu. Until about three decades ago, large sections of the Telugu movie industry operated out of Chennai. But today, Hyderabad is where all the Telugu cinema action is focused. Filmmmaker S.S. Rajamouli and male stars such as Prabhas enjoy nationwide popularity thanks mainly to the super success of the period action drama Baahubali.


Known for producing award winning films, Thiruvananthapuram, the hub of Malayalam cinema, is lately carving a niche for itself for new-age content-rich and commercial movies. From Adoor Gopalakrishnan to Mohanlal-Mammootty to Vineeth-Nivin Pauly, the land has a rich legacy of cinema

Thiruvananthapuram (formerly Trivandrum) is the capital of the southern Indian state of Kerala. The city, along with Kochi, serves as the nerve-centre of cinema in Malayalam. Although films were made in the state in the silent era, cinema in Kerala was late to flourish and at the time of India’s Independence in 1947, only a handful of Malayalam filmshad been produced. But when the movie industry in this part of the country took off in the 1950s, it not only quickly caught up with the rest of Indian cinema, it also established itself at the forefront of the Indian parallel cinema movement. Malayalam movie superstars Mohanlal and Mammootty are known across the country and directors such as Adoor Gopalakrishnan and Shaji N. Karun and the late G. Aravindan are feted at film festivals around the world.

When Malayalam cinema began to assume the proportions of a full-fledged industry post-Independence, it was headquartered in Chennai. It was only by the late 1980s that it moved completely to its current location in Thiruvananthapuram. Like the other cinemas of India, Malayalam movies are divided between a popular genre and a socially relevant strand. Cinema from Kerala gained national and international prominence, riding on the films made by Adoor and Aravindan in the 1970s and 1980s. The tradition of making realistic and meaningful cinema continues to this day.


The capital city of Karnataka is the home of Kannada film industry, popularly Sandalwood. It has produced some great talents, from actors to directors to technicians

In Bangalore, India’s Silicon Valley, films are made in the Kannada language. The first Kannada film was made in the talkie era, and the industry’s growth was steady until the late 1940s. The 1950s marked the advent of Dr.Rajkumar, whose popularity as a lead actor in mythological epics helped Kannada cinema achieve new heights. The 1970s and 1980s are generally regarded as the golden era of Kannada cinema, which was enriched by the work of directors like B.V.Karanth, Girish Karnad and Girish Kasaravalli. In 1970, Samskara, based on a novel by celebrated writer U.R. Ananthamurthy and directed by Pattabhi Rama Reddy, inaugurated the parallel cinema movement in Karnataka. While alternative cinema has continued to thrive in the state, commercial cinema, too, has sustained itself despite not quite enjoying the financial clout of Tamil and Telugu films.

LUCKNOW, Uttar Pradesh

Bhojpuri cinema, which also caters to third and fourth generation migrants in Surinam, Mauritius, Trinidad & Tobago, Fiji and Guyana, has its own star system and a committed audience base

The central Indian city of Lucknow is one of the bases of Bhojpuri cinema, which is produced largely in and for eastern Uttar Pradesh, western Bihar and Jharkhand. The first-ever Bhojpuri-language film, Ganga Maiyya Tohe Piyari Chadaibo (Mother Ganges, I Will Offer You a Yellow Sari), was released only in the early 1960s. But the industry grew steadily as the demand from people who speak the dialect in India and elsewhere increased. Bhojpuri cinema, which also caters to third and fourth generation migrants in Surinam, Mauritius, Trinidad & Tobago, Fiji and Guyana, has its own star system and a committed audience base, but it has failed to build on the opportunities to break into the national mainstream. The last couple of decades have seen a major spurt in the production of Bhojpuri films, but these have all been run-of-the-mill potboilers designed for an audience that seems to be undemanding and easy to please. In parts of India where Bhojpuri speakers live and work, these films continue to be exceedingly popular. But since most of these films are made on tight budgets and follow rushed production timelines, they tend to be rather low on technical finesse.


The shift of Odia cinema from Kolkata to Bhubaneswar heralded a new era. Since then, Bhubaneswar continues to be the focus point of Odia films

In the eastern Indian state of Odisha, films are made in Bhubaneswar and Cuttack.

The first Odia-language film was made in 1936, but until the 1950s only a handful of more titles were produced. Back then, the Odia film industry did not have production facilities of its own. Films in the language had to depend on Kolkata, which made movie-making in Odisha difficult and unviable.

In the late 1950s, the first cooperative venture to produce, distribute and exhibit Odia films was set up by Krushna Chandra Tripathy. The organization was named Utkal Chalachitra Pratisthan, and it produced several films in the 1960s that gave Odia cinema a distinct identity.

In 1961, another production house, Pancha Sakha, was set up by amateur artiste Dhira Biswal, who produced four hugely popular films. His first production, Nua Bou, created a sensation all across the state of Odisha.

Odia cinema developed its own idiom in subsequent years thanks to the efforts of the husband-wife team of Gour Prasad Ghosh and Parbati Ghosh. The duo produced several National Award-winning films, including the epochal Kaa.

Other production houses took roots in the 1970s, including Diamond Valley Productions, set up by entrepreneur Sarat Pujari.

In 1975, the state government stepped in to promote cinema by setting up the Odisha Film Development Corporation. Five years later, the Kalinga Studio came up with the support of Chennai’s Prasad Studios. Odisha currently produces an average of 20 films a year.


Despite heavy influence from Bollywood, Assamese cinema, being made from Guwahati, has carved a niche for itself and its presence in National Awards every year stands testimony to the claim

Assamese films, produced in north-eastern city of Guwahati, are a constant presence in India’s National Awards. Yet the film industry in Assam remains commercially unviable.

Constantly under the shadow of Bollywood films, the state has not been able to develop a distribution and exhibition system that can prop up locally made films and make them viable.

At the turn of the millennium, a ray of hope had emerged in the form of a spurt in Bollywood-inspired Assamese melodrama that found takers among the mass audience in the state. But the trend was short-lived.

Despite the effort of the pioneers and the work of their successors in the 1950s and 1960s (Bhupen Hazarika, Nip Barua, Pudum Barua), Assamese cinema has been dragged down by the paucity of exhibition outlets.

Despite all the odds, the names of the late author and filmmaker Bhabendra Nath Saikia and the still-active Jahnu Barua shine bright. In recent years, Rima Das, working largely out of her native village near Guwahati, has made massive waves globally with her films Village Rockstars and Bulbul Can Sing.

Filmmakers from the rest of Northeast India, notably Manipur and Meghalaya, are also increasingly making their presence felt on the national and international stage. Manipur’s Aribam Syam Sarma has for decades been a leading light of cinema from this region of India and his films have been lauded at festivals, including Cannes.

Shooting Locales in India -Andhra Pradesh

admin   July 29, 2019

From sun-kissed beaches of Visakhapatnam to the temples of Vijayawada, the Indian Grand Canyon at Gandikota and the Araku Valley, where the clouds say hello to the hills, Andhra is a filmmaker’s dream come true. The state boasts of a naturally, ecologically, culturally and religiously rich and diverse variety of destinations that are treasures of visual treat

Incentives Offered by Andhra Pradesh

  • The Andhra Pradesh State Film Television and Theatre Development Corporation, which issues shooting permission, levies no charges on children film makers, who can shoot free of cost at public places.
  • ST of state government for low-budget (under Rs. 4 crore budgeted movies) Telugu films will be waived if the movie is shot in Andhra Pradesh and also charge for locations will not be levied.
  • Best 15 movies given Rs 10 lakhs each of subsidy.
  • Reimbursement of INR 500,000, lease rentals, power subsidies, etc., to makers of animation films.
  • Reimbursement of production cost of an animation film or gaming product, (based on set guidelines/stipulations) up to a maximum of INR5 lakhs per film.

Initiatives taken

  • Single window clearance for film makers.
  • Animation, Media and Entertainment Policy (Policy) (2014–19).
  • Proposal to allot land for entrepreneurs for setting up of studios, film city, infrastructural units.
  • Allotment of more than 300 acres of land in Vizag near Ramanaidu Studio to build film studios.
  • Andhra Pradesh Animation and Gaming City to be set up initially in Hyderabad in an appropriate extent of land by government through AP Industrial Infrastructure Corporation (APIIC).
  • Nandi Award Festival to encourage growth of film, television and theatre arts.
  • The state government also gives awards like NTR National Film Awards, B.N. Reddy National Film Awards, Nagireddy-Chakrapani National Film Award and Raghupathi Venkaiah State Film Award.

Shooting Locales







Kurnool, among many others

For More Information Contact
A Rajyalaxmi, Manager PR,
Andhra Pradesh Tourism Authority
Tel: 9121144095
State Website: shoots

Building Brand Telangana Through Cinema

admin   May 6, 2018

Under the dynamic and visionary Chief Minister K Chandra Sekhar Rao, Telangana is leaving no stone unturned to make the State a popular film making destination of the world, here are the excerpts from an interview with B. Venkatesham, Tourism Secretary, Government of Telangana

The state of Telangana has some of the most beautiful film shooting locations. Tell us how film-friendly is the state for domestic and global filmmakers?
Telangana state is a place of rich heritage and historically Hyderabad state was ruled by Kakatiyas, Qutub Shahis and Nijam dynasties. Hyderabad city has more than 1,000 years of continuous living history ranging from the walled city of Old Hyderabad to Modern Hyderabad. There are Faluknama Palace, Golconda Fort, Charminar and Qutub Shahi tombs along with beautiful valleys and waterfalls spread across the state.
Many eminent filmmakers have on record highlighted the immense help they have been extended by the Telangana Government and its people while they shot their movies. The fact is that filmmaking is one of the most strenuous activities requiring a secure environment for filmmakers. We have always striven to ensure that and will continue to do so.

What steps are being taken by the government to bring global filmmakers and production houses to the film locales in the state?
A new government has been formed in Telangana State headed by the dynamic and visionary Chief Minister K Chandra Sekhar Rao. Under his leadership, Telangana Tourism and a dedicated nodal agency, Telangana State Film Development Corporation, have been formed for facilitating film shootings in the state. These agencies are working on various film-friendly policies in order to bring global and Indian film makers to discover the beauty of Indian stories, locations, art, culture and heritage.

What according to you are the advantages of getting a film shot in Telangana? What’s the infrastructure available for filmmakers here?
Hyderabad is a world-class film production centre offering award winning talent, both in front of and behind the camera. Leading edge post-production work, animation and special effect capabilities, stunning film making locations, state-of-the-art studio facilities along with comprehensive support services that deliver a seamless production experience from start to finish are available. The best example is the world renowned Ramoji Film City. It is acclaimed internationally and serves hundreds of films every year.

Does the state government offer sops like accommodation for crew to filmmakers during a film shooting?
Hyderabad is well connected with the rest of the world by an international airport and all the tourist destinations are well connected by rails and roads. The Telangana Tourism department also runs a hotel chain called Haritha Hotels. Their presence is spread across the state and located almost in all the tourist places. These hotels have qualified personnel and star facilities, providing accommodation, catering food and other amenities. Haritha Hotels has a website with all the required information and accommodation can be booked online. The Tourism department gives a rebate of about 30% on project basis. So film makers can book hotels in advance as per their filming schedules.

The Government of India has set up a Film Facilitation Office (FFO) for seamless single window clearance. Do you have any such single window clearance system in place to facilitate film shooting in the State?
To encourage film shooting in the State, Telangana Government is formulating a robust film tourism policy which includes a single window clearances for necessary permissions and logistic and administration assistance.
The specialty of the policy is that Telangana State Film Development Corporation will accept the application from filmmakers and process their application for shootings by pursuing the matter with various departments and issuing clearances within 7 days. If not done in the prescribed time frame, the applicants could take all permissions as deemed to have been given on the eighth day and could start shooting.

Do you have a redressal mechanism in place for film producers to contact when they face problems during a film shoot? Who is the first person to call in Telangana if someone wants to shoot?
We will be happy to assist filmmakers through the course of shooting and would try and eliminate any problem or difficulties. Telangana State Film Development Corporation (TSFDC) has appointed a nodal officer to understand the concerns and needs of filmmakers through the various stages of filmmaking and the permission process. Filmmaker can also reach the Executive Director of TSFDC for any query.

What other initiatives do you have for the creative industry and filmmakers to engage them?
The Telangana Tourism department is inviting filmmakers and producers across the globe to take part in the massive state wide “Fam-Tours” to get acquainted with the State and film locations.
These Fam-Tours campaign to build Brand Telangana and tell its beauty across all media platforms. We are also radically improving infrastructure across the state to make it them beautiful and functional for film makers.

Will you be forthcoming if any of the foreign film producers want to project Telangana as a backdrop for a feature film?
We are committed to creating great cinema. We aspire to become a part of the international filmmaking community which will be proud to see more of Telangana and our people in international cinema.

 Jodeghat valley
 Laknavaram Suspension Bridge
 Golconda Fort
 SapthaGundalu Water Falls
 Ramoji Film City
 Faluknama Palace