V. Mirchandani (16th Street Prod. / Australia): “I am currently producing a feature doc on food safety in China”

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Indian born Vijaykumar Mirchandani speaks about his new project about food in China and the future of documentary industry in Asia.

Could you introduce yourself?

I was born in India. Although an engineer by profession with a marketing diploma, myAi??passion was always TV and film-making. I am a seasoned television professional that has been associated with the TV business since the last 17 years. I have been traveling to different countries working for different TV stations, channels and networks specializing in Pay TV from India, Middle East, Europe, Far East, Australia and has recently set foot in China in 2011.

How did you get involved and why are you interested in documentary industry?

In 2006, I was Head of Promotions for Al Jazeera Documentary Channel where I wasAi??exposed to the world of documentaries. After making a short documentary on Autism, IAi??discovered my talent of story-telling and pursued my passion for film-making. Spiritual atAi??heart, I believe in giving back to society what baclofen buy online, generic lioresal. I have earned in some way or the other.

Believing in myself, I followed my dream to Australia hoping it would be that playingAi??ground for a die-hard TV buff like me who came from Bollywood.

My first AustralianAi??feature documentary completed in 2010 has earnedAi??14 awards and 30 international film festival selections making my belief stronger about making documentaries. MovingAi??forward with a passion of Making A Difference, I created a MAD House with MAD peopleAi??wanting to create MADness. (MAD means Making A Difference).

What are your favorite topics for doc projects?

Thriving on subjects that areAi??challenging & involve social awareness, I am working on numerous projects addressingAi??issues likeAi??autism, environmental, health and social well-being.

Could you introduce your production company?

16th Street Productions P/L wasAi??established in 2009 in Sydney, Australia.
I am working with independent producers andAi??directors and sourcing freelancers on project basis.
The production budgetAi??varies on projects (for example, the last production cost was approx. 75,000 AUD)
Email: 16thstreetproductions@gmail.com

Have you already produced documentary in Asia or about Asia?Ai??

I already produced a feature documentary in Australia on a social issue of homelessness (“Where The Streets Have No Name”) in 2010. This documentary has not been broadcastAi??yet anywhereai??i??

I am currently in production of a feature documentary on Organic Food & Food Safety in China (“The Green Call of China”). (see below)

Have you already done international co-production projects in or about Asia?

My currentAi??feature documentary on Organic Food & Food Safety in China will be an international co-production.

How do you see the evolution of the Asian documentary industry?

It’s still in its infancy stage and needs a lot of promotion to reach at the level of Europe, US or Australia.Ai??I do know a lot of independent producers from Asia.

What do you think about the evolution of the Chinese doc landscape, producers and broadcasters?Ai??

The biggest challenge is its spread and population living in the interiors who have no access to satellite or pay TV and education backgrounds to comprehend documentaries. The audiences are limited to only first tier and second tier cities.

Having said that the new initiative by CCTV is great and education and penetration need to be at the grass roots level. Itai??i??s a slow start but definitely a market beyond imaginationai??i??it needs more aggressive approach.

Can you present your new documentary project?Ai??Are you looking for partner(s)?

I am currently producing aAi??feature documentary on Organic Food & Food Safety in China. (“The Green Call of China”). The shooting is almost 75% complete. I am looking for funding support on this for completion. See the project in THE ADN PROJECT DATABASE. Video trailer on Youtube

In the last 2 years, have you seen any Asian documentaries that impressed you?

Yes I especially liked “The Last Train Home” (official website, wikipedia page, IMdB film page) and “A Farewell Song” (wikipedia page, IMdB film page, video trailer).

Ai??

About “Where The Streets Have No Name”

2010 – Australia – 76 min

16 international awards including Academy of Film Festival 2011 – India (Award Winner) andAi??International Film Festival of Ireland 2011 (Best World Documentary Award Winner).

IMDb film page, film page on Documentary Australia Foundation, Video trailer

Interview by mail on 20th April 2012

Contact: 16thstreetproductions@gmail.com

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