Only 81 cinema halls functioning in Orissa

Panaji, Nov 26 (Calcutta Tube) There are only 81 cinema halls in Orissa to cater to a population of 3.6 crore and 103 urban townships, a minister pointed out here Friday while saying a policy was on the cards to promote movie watching culture the state.

‘We have only 81 cinemas existing in Orissa as of today. A lot of them were destroyed by the cyclone and have not been able to restart,’ Orissa’s Information and Public Relations Minister Prafulla Kumar Samal said.

He is leading a delegation of officials and filmmakers to the 41st International Film Festival of India (IFFI) in Goa to attend celebrations for 75 years of Oriya cinema.

‘The government is actively considering formulating a policy to promote films and reviving film culture in Orissa. We want to have a cinema hall to cater to each of the 103 urban areas and panchayat blocks in the state,’ Samal said.

He admitted that Oriya cinema was lagging behind its closest regional counterparts in West Bengal and Assam.

‘Only 15 to 20 films are produced annually. We want to streamline loan or subsidy procedures so that filmmakers can get money to make films,’ Samal said.

Veteran Oriya actress Gloria Mahapatra, and directors Neerad Mahapatra, A.K. Bir, Prashant Nanda were felicitated at IFFI 2010.

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