LAHORE: June 5 marked a day of disenchantment for the Pakistani film industry as the federal budget announced on the same day featured no funding for the industry. #Lollywood was hoping that funds would be allocated for the establishment of a digital lab as well as for the industry’s revival efforts.
Office bearers of the United Film Association of Pakistan (UFAP) were very ‘depressed’ after finding out that the government had not reserved any additional funds in the federal budget. However, their hopes were somewhat restored on Monday when senior government officials said that funds would be allocated for the film industry through a special grant.
A source told The Express Tribune that funds for the establishment of a digital lab would be given through a special grant. The chairperson of the Standing Committee on Culture and Tourism Chairman Nilofar Bakhtiar also confirmed that the government had not given up the idea of funding the revival of the film industry.
However, critics of #Lollywood believe that the film industry is not dependent on what money the government provides, but on whether senior directors and producers are actually serious about reviving it. They said that the association which represented #Lollywood had not done anything concrete so far and was just waiting for the funds as if money would solve all the problems of the industry.
Over the weekend Reema told Daily Express that the industry should not be disappointed because the government was already burdened with so many problems, and “we should look towards a better future instead.”
A senior producer who requested anonymity said that people who were serious in doing work did it without any support from the government. “Ijaz Bajwa had made a nice debut film (Channah Sachi Muchi) without any support. #Shoaib-Mansoor made a very good movie (Khuda Kay Liye) which ran all over the world. Those who want to work actually do and those who are not serious wait for help from the government or other entities,” he said.
UFAP Chairman Mian Amjad Farzand, who was rather disappointed on Sunday, was in a better mood the day after when he discovered the grant would be given. Farzand said that ‘work’ was still in progress on the scripts of the movies. “Establishing a digital lab in Pakistan will be really helpful for producers and will help revive the film industry,” he said.