Filmmaker Kiran Rao will spearhead a new and unique film centre in Mumbai ‘FilmBay’, a National Film Development Corporation (NFDC) initiative to be launched by the end of this year. The ‘FilmBay’ will provide an alternative, exhibition space for independent and art-house cinema and documentaries that may never get a traditional commercial Bollywood release.
Kiran Rao, as Creative Director, will be supported by renowned members of the industry, Anupama Chopra, Anurag Kashyap, Zoya Akhtar, Dibakar Banerjee and Rohan Sippy,who will bring in their collective expertise to make the Film Centre a diverse, eclectic hub for debate and discussion.
Being a collaboration between NFDC and Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai, the ‘FilmBay’ will be based at an existing theatre at Sherly Rajan Village (Bandra west), which will be completely revamped by NFDC and will be equipped with an exhibition hall, a 100-seater digital cinema, a reading and research library, a bookshop and a cafeteria.
The ‘FilmBay’ has been given on lease to NFDC by the MCGM for a period of 30years from January 2, 2015, to exhibit films along with educational and promotional activities for the growth of cinema. Further, the Centre will also emerge as a hub for the film fraternity and cinephiles to interact and share film wisdom. The Centre will also aim to hold special screenings for the children of municipal schools to enlighten and enhance their vision for good cinema.
Filmmaker Kiran Rao says, “It has long been my dream to have a space for cinema as art, where one can experience and engage in different ways with a diverse and challenging array of films, and ‘FilmBay’ is that dream coming true! Thanks to the BMC, we found the ideal space to build a centre for the appreciation of cinema on an institutional scale, and under NFDC, the centre is finally taking shape. Mumbai, with its 100 year history of film, deserves a space for the encouragement and celebration of cinema, and through an eclectic film program as well as a library and archive, we hope to further the conversation around cinema both for the film professional and the film enthusiast.”
Nina Lath Gupta (Managing Director- NFDC India), says, “The ‘FilmBay’ in Mumbai is a natural corollary to NFDC’s endeavor to facilitate the growth of the good cinema movement in India. This multi-faceted initiative, a brainchild of Kiran Rao, supports NFDC’s intent of pursuing innovative methods of exhibiting and making accessible diverse filmic content to a larger audience base, thus promoting India’s vibrant cinematic movement.”
Meanwhile, Sitaram Kunte (Municipal Commissioner, Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai) said, “We are very happy to collaborate with NFDC on this wonderful initiative. Mumbai being the film capital of India needed a unique platform where young filmmakers and cine enthusiasts can come together to share and experience the cinematic movement of both India and the world. With the creative fraternity of the film sector throwing their weight behind this venture, I am sure the venue will become an iconic landmark of Mumbai in a very short time.”