The Assam State Film (Finance and Development) Corporation (ASFFDC) has announced plans to help in the construction of setting up close to fifteen cinema halls across the State.
The State Government has earmarked around Rs five crore for the initiative for this financial year, along with subsidies up to Rs 50 lakhs for constructing new cinema halls and Rs 25 lakhs for renovating old ones.
“The corporation is looking forward to this initiative and has prepared a set of guidelines, which are awaiting approval by the Cabinet before being notified. We are planning on setting up 15 new halls initially and the Jonaki Cinema Hall at Tezpur would be developed as a heritage cinema hall,” chairman of ASFFDC, Jatin Bora said while addressing the media.
A new cinema hall is also being set up atop the ASFFDC building at Panjabari. The Rs four crore project is expected to be inaugurated and functional by the end of this year itself. Bora also mentioned that the Corporation has plans to revive the Assam State Cinema Awards this year.
“We are planning to hold the programme from May 11 to 13 along with a film festival. The awards were not given out for the last three years, due to less number of movies being released within the State. One cannot hold a competition among the 10-15 movies that are in the running but if there are 30-40 releases in a year, the award function can be held,” he said.
The Corporation is also in talks with various departments and organizations to make documentaries, films and advertisements through the ASFFDC. “We also have plans to dish out 100 per cent subsidies to film-makers interested in making good films within a small budget,” Bora further added.
The ASFFDC has also started the process of digitizing 135 films which are in reel format to be at par with the competitiveness of the film-making business. “In the first phase of the project, we are planning to digitize 50 of the movies.” Bora added.
State Cultural Affairs Minister, Naba Kumar Doley, who was also present at the press briefing, disclosed about a government plan to organize a children’s film festival in the months of June-July next.