28th September 2021

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UP’s big “Film City” Plan

Uttar Pradesh Prime Minister Yogi Adityanath on Tuesday (September 22nd) unveiled an ambitious plan to create a “city of cinema” and invited the cinema fraternity to come to the state.

  • The CM announced that 1,000 acres had been identified at Gautam Budh Nagar by the Yamuna Expressway Industrial Development Authority (YEIDA), where a dedicated infotainment zone with world-class civil, public and technological facilities would be established, a statement said.
  • CM Adityanath announced Friday, September 18 that “the largest and most beautiful film city in the country” would be established in the district of Gautam Budh Nagar. Filmmaker Madhur Bhandarkar visited him on Sunday and Tuesday, several movie personalities including Anupam Kher, Udit Narayan and Satish Kaushik attended a meeting with Adityanath.
  • While there is enthusiasm for the project, with government officials indicating that it is also intended to create employment opportunities in the state, this is not the first time that a UP government has attempted to woo the film industry to establish a base in the state. These first attempts failed to start.

What has the government announced and what follow-up actions have been taken?

On September 18, while leading a Meerut Division review meeting, Chief Minister Adityanath ordered officials to search for land under the jurisdiction of NOIDA, the Greater Noida Industrial Development Authority or the Yamuna Expressway Industrial Development Authority. create a “city of cinema”. The move garnered a lot of attention and sparked reactions from the film industry.

  • The officials acted quickly, and on the same day the “expression of interest” was asked to appoint an agency to assess options for creating the “cinema city or infotainment zone”. Interested agencies were invited to submit their application within the following 15 days.

Has the government done anything so far to demonstrate its commitment to the film industry?

In recent years, the UP has offered financial incentives of up to Rs 2 crore to attract filmmakers to the state. The scripts for these films are approved by the state government, and these films must meet certain criteria under applicable state film policy.

  • Under the policy, a film made in Awadhi, Braj, Bundeli or Bhojpuri can receive up to 50% of the cost of the film as a grant, and up to 25% of the cost if made in Hindi, in English or any other language. another language.
  • This subsidy is subject to a maximum limit of Rs 1 crore if at least 50 percent of the filming was done in the state, and Rs 2 crore if two-thirds of the film is shot in UP.
  • The policy also provides for additional incentives if the director shoots a second or third film also in the state; In such cases, the maximum subsidy may reach Rs 2.50 crore provided that two-thirds of the shooting days are as-is for one-third of successive films by the same director or producer.
  • While five main artists in the film are from Uttar Pradesh, the state provides an additional subsidy of Rs 25 lakh for salaries; In case all the artists are from the state, the producer can receive up to Rs 50 lakh.
  • The policy also proposes that if a producer after filming of the film carries out his processing in the State, then 50 percent of the cost of processing, up to a maximum of Rs 50 lakh, would be awarded as an additional grant.
  • The policy further proposes that if a film training institute is established in a major city other than Noida or Greater Noida, the state would provide 50 percent, or up to Rs 50 lakh, of the cost as a grant.
  • “Film Bandhu” has awarded a grant of Rs 22.59 million to 38 large and small films in Hindi and Bhojpuri over the past three years, which have shot at least half of the film in UP.

Which films have benefited from this desire to attract filmmakers?

  • Films that received 2 million rupees include Akshay Kumar’s Jolly LLB 2 and Toilet: Ek Prem Katha; while those who received over Rs 1 crore include Shaadi Mein Zaroor Aana, Sonu ke Titu ki Sweety, Lupt and Kaashi in search of Ganga.
  • Bhojpuri’s Saiyaan Superstar film received Rs 64 lakh, and Dabang Sarkar received Rs 61 lakh. Like other states, UP also grants tax breaks on films.

How were the previous attempts to create a “film city” in UP?

In 2015, two film cities were proposed in Uttar Pradesh and agreements were signed in the presence of Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav, director and producer Boney Kapoor and Bhojpuri actor (now (Gorakhpur BJP hui MP) Ravi Kishan One of these film cities was offered along the Lucknow-Agra highway, and the other in the Trans Ganga City project in Unnao.

  • The government had offered about 300 acres of land to each of these two proposed film cities. They were offered a public-private partnership model, with a proposed investment of around Rs 700 crore.
  • However, neither project saw the light. Government sources said the projects could not move forward largely because they were not He was able to agree on the precise location of the land, Ravi Kishan had wanted land around Gorakhpur.
  • In fact, the practice of offering incentives to filmmakers is quite old – some government officials have said this has been around since 1998 and subsequent governments have continued the policy after making changes.
  • The Akhilesh government increased the subsidy from Rs 1 crore to Rs 2 crore, and relaxed the previous requirement that at least 70% of the film be shot in UP, to 50%.
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