Kannada producers protest 'discrimination' at IFFI

Bangalore, Nov 28 (IANS) Producers of Kannada films being showcased at the 38th International Film festival of India (IFFI) in Goa say they are not being given the same respect as directors.

Bangalore, Nov 28 (IANS) Producers of Kannada films being showcased at the 38th International Film festival of India (IFFI) in Goa say they are not being given the same respect as directors.

K.M. Veeresh, producer of 'Kaada Beladingalu', which is being screened at IFFI Wednesday, has even said he is not going to Goa.

'I am protesting against the attitude of the film festival directorate, which feels that the producer of a film is not entitled to full benefits because he is not doing any creative job,' he said.

'I have been sent an invitation to participate in the film festival and only my staying arrangements have been made,' he added.

Voicing his discontent over the arrangement, he said, 'I have to shell out money for my travel, but there is full reimbursement for directors whose films are selected for the Indian Panorama.

'It is not a question of spending money to attend the festival, but it is the attitude of the directorate which is to be blamed.

'I don't know why a producer should be ill-treated in this manner. I have decided to protest against this attitude,' the produced echoed.

Apparently, K.N. Siddalingaiah, who is the joint producer of the film, will also keep away from the festival.

Their protest is getting increasing support from other producers, who have said the Goa festival directorate has to immediately change its policy and treat the producers and directors of award-winning films or Indian Panorama films equally.

Film director Ramadasa Naidu, whose film 'Moggina Jade' was selected for the Indian Panorama this year, has gone to Goa but said the festival directorate is wrong in not placing the producer at par with the director of the film.

Naidu said the joint producer of 'Moggina Jade' would be coming to the festival at his own expense.

'I don't know why our film festival authorities have to do such a thing,' Naidu told IANS.

'I understand that the festival directorate is following the example of the Cannes film festival, where only the directors and artistes are invited,' he said.

'The directorate spends a lot of money for security expenses for Bollywood artistes, yet they are not prepared to extend comfortable facilities to film producers who have spent money on films, which are often described as products that showcase the Indian ethos and its social and cultural roots,' Naidu pointed out.

Actress Jayamala, who has made award-winning films like 'Thaayi Saaheba' and 'Thuththuri', also voiced her discontent over the arrangements.

'This is ridiculous. Why is a producer left out when he spends his entire time and money on making the film from the day he conceives the idea?' she asked.

'I don't think the directorate will be incurring a big expenditure if it extends all the facilities that are extended to the film's director,' the actress said.

Sa.Ra. Govindoo, vice-president of the Karnataka Film Chamber and a representative of producers, said they had lodged a protest a year ago against the festival directorate for discriminating between the producers and directors of films selected for Indian Panorama.

'The directorate had assured us that they will make amends, but they are even now continuing with the discrimination,' he said.

'We will be interacting with the other associations from the south to take up the matter with the Film Federation of India and also the ministry of information and broadcasting,' said Govindoo, who is at present shooting for his new film 'Minchina Ota' in Goa.

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