India makes close to a thousand films every year, but only 25-30 films are children’s films and only a handful get a decent release.
Children’s Film Festival of India is currently in progress (usually concludes on Nov 14th – Children’s day) but no one is talking about it.
So what’s the problem?
Here’s what film celebrities have to say.
- Mukesh Khanna, chairman of CFSI (Children’s film society of India) says more producers have to come forward and make films. They expect Haary Potter from Hollywood but don’t even make a Shaktimaan here.
Mukesh Khanna asks “if we can spend Rs.300 crore on Baahubali, why we can’t spend Rs.10 cr on a children’s film?”
He says kids need films that they can enjoy, they definitely don’t need ‘saas bahu’ dramas.
- Salman Khan’s father Salim Khan feels a kids film can do well at the box office if it has the backing of a star. For example, Aamir Khan in Taare Zameen Par, Salman Khan in Bajrangi Bhaijaan, and Rajesh Khanna in Haathi Mere Saathi.
Salim says a child doesn’t watch a film alone, its mostly with their parents. That was their thinking (Salim Khan & Javed Akhtar) when they wrote Mr. India.
Parody Song from Mr. India | Anil Kapoor, Sridevi
- Filmmaker Amole Gupte, who has made several children films, says that the reason why so few films for kids get made is because “as a film industry we do not respect children”.
children’s cinema comes below regional cinema in the pecking order. Despite his films faring badly at the box office, Amole says he will continue to make films for kids.
- Lyricist Gulzar says that to be able to write for kids, one has to become kid himself. However, most adults are unwilling to do that. That is why so few films and songs are based on children.
- While most filmmakers blame competition from Hollywood films, one filmmaker says “There’s no competition from Hollywood because they generate differentiated content for kids. We make one-off films. Studios don’t largely encourage our films.”