Will promote India as shooting destination: NFDC chairman-designate

Thiruvananthapuram, June 6 (IANS) Malayalam film actor and chairman-designate of the National Film Development Corporation ( NFDC) Suresh Gopi says his main focus after taking over would be to sell India as a shooting destination.

The actor, who has been nominated by the Narendra Modi government to head NFDC, shared his views while talking to reporters here on Saturday.

He also noted that union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley has set aside a budget of Rs.30 crore for it.

“It’s with this money that we have to take care of films from 20 regional languages. My first task would be to see that NFDC raises its own funds and for that promoting India as a shooting location for world cinema industry is the best bet,” said Gopi.

The actor has already chalked out a plan for it. He said that he would “get in touch with the Indian embassies in countries where the film industry is popular to promote India as the one-stop shop for film shooting.”

“Our embassies would act as a single window clearance point for those who want to shoot their films in India,” he said.

This is the first time that NFDC will have a chairman from Kerala. And Gopi denies any political angle in his selection.

“Before the last Lok Sabha elections, I had a long talk with the then Gujarat chief minister (Narendra Modi) and I shared my views on how Doordarshan should be revamped and we talked on various aspects including films. It was Minister of State for Information and Broadcasting Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore, who offered me this post and after speaking to a few people, I agreed,” he said.

Another point in Gopi’s mind is to reach the regional film industry.

“My aim is to spread NFDC’s tentacles across the country and to ensure that there is a wide regional spread when it comes to supporting regional films,” the actor said.

Talking about balancing his acting career with the new role, Gopi said that since there is an administrative machinery in Mumbai that takes care of NFDC he will have time to pursue his acting career.

“See these days, I have become selective when it comes to signing films. It’s the quiz (‘Ningelukum Akam Kodieshweran’, the Malayalam version of ‘Kaun Banega Crorepati’), that I am putting everything into,” he said.

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