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New Delhi, Jul 25 Seeking to highlight the "huge loss" of cinematic heritage of the south India, a week-long workshop on film preservation and restoration would be held in Chennai in October by a consortium of film bodies from around the globe.
Filmmaker and archivist Shivendra Singh Dungarpur, whose National Award-winning documentary 'Celluloid Man' had highlighted the "precarious condition" of the cinematic legacy in the country, says the workshop aims to foster a sense of preservation in the region.
He said the first workshop was held in in Mumbai in 2015 followed by the second one in Pune last year. A change in the attitude of the film industry and the government towards film preservation has been seen, he said.
"The Chennai workshop will be our third edition with the aim of spreading the message to the south Indian film industry that has an incredible film history — but which has been sadly neglected. The region still patronises the industry but in terms of preservation, a lot needs to be done immediately as the loss is huge," Dungarpur told PTI.
Actor Kamal Haasan has extended his support to the workshop, saying, the films of past are as important as films of the present.
"The film industry must come forward to conserve, save and keep our film heritage intact. This workshop will teach future archivists on film preservation. We must support preservation as people from around the world are interested in saving not only their own films but also Indian films," he said.
Mumbai-based Film Heritage Foundation and the International Federation of Film Archives (FIAF) will host the workshop October 7-14 at the Prasad Labs in Chennai, a decision the 48-year-old filmmaker says, was taken "very consciously".
Dungarpur, the founder director of Film Heritage Foundation says, "The south Indian film industry and people need to understand that magnitude of loss we have suffered in terms of losing our cinematic heritage, from silent era to early talkies and documentaries."
"And, the loss is much more pronounced in south India. From films of Sivaji Ganesan and Gemini Ganesan to MGR (M G Ramachandran) and (NTR) N T Rama Rao, we need to know the wealth of our vernacular cinematic heritage, in all four languages -- Tamil, Telugu, Malayalam and Kannada," he added.
"We chose Chennai because Tamil film industry is a huge one and Prasad Labs has been associated with the film industry in the country for several decades," he said.
The other partners in the workshop include the Film Foundation's World Cinema Project, L’Immagine Ritrovata, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences, Prasad Corp., La Cinémathèque française, Imperial War Museums, Fondazione Cineteca di Bologna and Kodak.
"The Academy of Motion Pictures Arts And Sciences, La Cinémathèque française, Imperial War Museums, Finnish Film Archive, Czech National Archive and Kodak are our new partners," Dungarpur added.
Restored classics from around the world will be screened during the workshop.
"Kodak's new Super 8 film camera prototype would also be launched at the workshop," he said.