BAFTA brings three new industry experts to support mentorship in India


MUMBAI:  BAFTA announced three new industry experts - Oscar-winning film producer Guneet Monga, veteran actress Ratna Pathak Shah and gaming entrepreneur Vishal Gondal - who will share their knowledge with the talents who take part in the mentorship programme 'BAFTA Breakthrough India'.

British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) 'Breakthrough' initiative in India aims at increasing global opportunities for people to pursue careers in the arts.

Talking on the occasion, Guneet in conversation with IANS says that the power of mentorship is the most crucial part for any talent to grow and even though earlier such structure was not there in our industry, it is interesting to notice how things have evolved in the recent time.

Guneet told IANS: "I think there is a power of great mentorship that we often ignore and from the beginning of our career, with the right kind of exposure and mentorship, we actually can empower a lot of raw talent.

"In the beginning of my career, with the kind of co-production that I have done and travelled to the film festivals, experience the power of storytelling as well as the business side of it, helped me to make the kind of choices I did. With an initiative like BAFTA Breakthrough India, it will unlock the opportunity of many talents for mentorship."

Guneet, the founder of Sikhya Entertainment, is known for producing and co-producing some of award-winning films like 'The Lunchbox', 'Masaan', 'Gangs of Wasseypur', 'Zindagi inshort', 'Pagglait', 'What Will People Say', 'Soorarai Pottru', among others. She was one of the producers of the Indian documentary 'Period. End of Sentence.' that won the Academy Award for Best Documentary (Short Subject) in 2019.

Emphasizing exposure to world cinema and interacting with experts from across the globe, Guneet shared how travelling with films in various festivals changed her perspective.

"Earlier we did not have the structure of mentorship programme for talents. But now as things are evolving, in last one year, the way the gates opened for every kind of story and the audience evolved, I think this is the time for all the talent to find that bridge through such initiative to exchange thoughts, build the network and get good mentorship. And it is not just about filmmaking, storytelling but there are other categories like music composing, costume designing, gaming etc," she said.

Asked about the best way of pitching a story to get it made, she said, " Well, storytelling is all about perspective and liking a story is quite subjective. So, when you pitch a story, some people would like it, some won't. But in both cases, do not judge yourself all the time.

"At times, it also happens that after the successful phase in their career, in the middle, when they go through a rough patch, people start judging their potential. Since mentorship also builds a certain kind of confidence in you, it becomes much needed to get the breakthrough. I think there, the programme also holds a relevance."

The last date for applications for 'BAFTA Breakthrough India' is November 30. The participants can visit the official website of BAFTA to apply.



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