Indian film festivals have come under increasing pressure to cut back on festivals after some of the biggest names in the industry quit their roles in the past two years, including director-writer and actor Dinesh Chatterjee, producer-actor Ananth Kumar, writer-director Amitabh Bachchan, writer and producer-director Ashish Khetan and composer/actor Rajdeep Sardesai.
The festival movement has seen several smaller festivals, including one called Mather India Film Festival, cut back significantly in the last year, and some big-name festivals have decided to pull out of the festival calendar altogether, as well.
The Mather festival, which is the biggest of the two in the country, announced on Wednesday that it will be cancelling its 2019 season and its 2018 and 2017 editions.
The festival had held two big festivals in recent years, with a first edition in 2015 and a second edition in 2018.
The first edition was so successful that it was inducted into the Guinness Book of World Records as the world’s biggest film festival.
“The festival will not be holding the 2018 edition, and the 2017 edition is no longer in the works, said the festival.
The 2019 edition will be held at a later date.
We will announce a date and date for its cancellation in due course,” the festival said in a statement.
The 2019 edition of the film festival had over 40 films, including the film about the controversial Durga Puja, the Durga Prakash festival, a short documentary on India’s war with Pakistan, a drama about the caste system, and a film about Mumbai’s transformation after the 9/11 attacks.
The first edition of Mather has a long list of stars in the film industry, including Amitabheb Bachchan and Ananth Kapoor.
However, the festival has not seen any major stars in recent months.
Chatterjee quit his role as director-producer of the award-winning film Dineshan Chatterji, which has a huge global following, in September, and later joined Ananth Khetana and Rajdeep Sardesai as producers-directors.
The duo also produced the film Dhanush, which won an Oscar for best foreign language film.
The Indian Film Awards (IFAs) were started in 2010 and have been widely regarded as the Oscars of the industry.
The IFAs are hosted in London, but the festival organisers said they were also considering hosting them in India.
“I have been disappointed by the lack of major stars and filmmakers participating in our IFAs and I feel that the IFAs have become irrelevant,” Chatterjjee said in an interview with The Indian Express.
“I would like to think that in the next decade, India will be home to more films, but I am yet to see any major players participating in these IFAs.”
Last year, the IFA’s director-writers and producers-director, Akshay Kumar, left the festival for personal reasons.
This year, he also left the IFM, a group of the country’s leading film makers and producers.
The IFA and IFM have both cut back their schedules and festivals in the face of dwindling demand from the film-watching public.
“While the festival is a very important source of income for festivals, it is also very expensive,” Chitterjee said.
“It would be better if they had a financial mechanism to support the producers.
But that would be another story.”
In the past few years, there have been several attempts by festival organisers to increase the number of film festivals across the country.
The India Cinema Film Festival has been set up, but it is run largely by non-profit organisations, while the Film Entertainment Association of India (FIAI) and India’s Film Development Association (IDA) have both scaled back their respective activities and have focused on the production of films.
The 2018 edition of Mumbai International Film Festival (MIFF) was also scaled back after organisers found that there was no demand for the festival, and it will no longer be held in Mumbai.
However the festival organizers said that the festival will still be held.”MIFF was not an easy decision to take as Mumbai International film festival was not the type of festival we wanted to take,” said the organisers of the MIFF.
“MIFF will not happen anymore, but we will try to organise it as a different festival, where it is possible to be part of a community and also work together,” they said.