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Print and electronic media and film
The objectives of the Council's print and electronic media and film program are to increase understanding of Australia in India, and of India in Australia, through the print media and radio, television and film.
To encourage working relationships between the Australian and Indian film and television industries, the Council provided funding for Ms Safina Uberoi and Ms Penny McDonald to visit India to develop a production strategy for a range of Australia-India film and television media projects.
This project followed on from a Council-supported Australia-India film industry promotion conducted by the Australian Film, Television and Radio School in New Delhi, Mumbai and Pune in late 1996 as part of the Australia India-New Horizons promotion. Council-supported film industry activities have played a significant part in the marked increase in collaboration between the two film industries during the last three years.
Another major Council film initiative is a planned bilateral exchange of film festivals, to be managed by Cinemedia Victoria and curated by the Melbourne International Film Festival. The Council funded a visit to India in January 1999 by Ms Amree Hewitt of Cinemedia to hold preliminary discussions on the proposed film exchange. On the basis of Ms Hewitt's findings, the Council agreed to provide funding for the first stage of the proposed exchange, an Australian film festival that will screen a range of feature and short films in three or four Indian cities during 1999-2000.
The Council provided funding to the Australian Film Television and Radio School to enable Associate Professor John Carroll, Lecturer in Communication at Charles Sturt University, Bathurst, to visit Pune in February and April 1999 to assist with the implementation and monitoring of the new film and television curriculum at the Film and Television Institute of India (FTII). Professor Carroll's analysis and suggested changes have been accepted by the Academic Council and Governing Council of the FTII, as the basis for the introduction of new courses for the 2000 academic year.
The Council also provided funding to Ms Laleen Jayamanne of the Department of Art History and Theory at the University of Sydney towards the costs of participation by leading Indian film theorist Mr Ashish Rajadhyaksha in a three-day conference on film theory held in Sydney during November 1998.