During his visit to a film set in Mumbai today, the Deputy Prime Minister, Nick Clegg announced that Vistaar Productions is to invest £13 million in the UK over the next twelve months, including a new post-production facility in Manchester. The new facility will be used as a hub for the editing of Indian films being shot in the UK, creating jobs and attracting further investment from the Bollywood industry.
Mr Clegg launched the filming of the new Vistaar production Veda at the Taj Mahal Palace Hotel in Mumbai, operating the clapperboard on the first shot and meeting the cast and crew. This Indian interpretation of Shakespeare's Hamlet will be produced in both the UK and India. It is due for release in the autumn of 2015.
Vistaar today announced that they will be investing £13 million in the UK over the next 18 months, including approximately £3.9 million for the British filming of Veda and £7.2 million in the new production Guru Dutt, which will be partly made in the UK.
The Deputy Prime Minister said: "I wish Vistaar every success in their UK venture. Amid the colour, the drama and the spectacle of Bollywood, it is easy to forget how important it is to the Indian economy, generating hundreds of millions of pounds in Mumbai and the rest of India. As we have seen with American co-productions on a grand scale, Britain is one of the world's top destinations for film makers. I hope Indian producers will follow their counterparts in the US and take advantage of the UK's facilities, expertise and glorious locations to create the next Indian Star Wars or Game of Thrones."
Vistaar Managing Director Sheetal Talwar said: "We feel that the current government has provided an ecosystem that has made investing and filming in the UK highly efficient and investor friendly. We are working with entertainment specialist Chartered Accountants Nyman Libson Paul and Goldfinch to explore and invest in further projects in the UK. We feel that our British investments shall give us opportunity to grow the business and help us achieve market leadership in our sector of socially responsible cinema"
Bollywood, India's contribution to the international film market, is the largest film producing industry in the world. It is based in Mumbai, with films predominantly in the Hindi language. A large number of Bollywood films have been filmed in the UK which have served to generate tourism to those locations from India and overseas. The Indian film industry has shot over 50 films in the UK over the past decade, and Hindi-language films frequently enter the UK top ten.