“Laughter of Lakshmi” gets new Indian filming incentives

Renowned theater director and filmmaker S. Shakthidharan’s Australian film The Laugh of Lakshmi will be one of the first films to take advantage of the newly announced Indian film incentives.

The film, a dance drama, tells the story of a mother and son separated by war. The mother, a celebrated classical dancer, sends her young son, also a brilliant dancer, to Sydney to be cared for by her brother.

“My hope for ‘The Laugh of Lakshmi’ is to create a hybrid form of cinema based on the principles of my community’s ancient art forms and practices – shared storytelling, a balanced mix of dialogue, music and dance, one emotion the intimacy next to the epic. But which is then embellished with the best of Western cinema – authentic, gripping character studies cohesively set in grounded worlds,” said Shakthidharan.

Shakthidharan’s play Counting and Cracking won seven Helpmann Awards in 2019, including Best Play and Best New Australian Work, and won Best Main Stage Production at the 2019 Sydney Theater Awards.

The film is being produced by veteran John Maynard at Felix Media (“Jirga”). Frames Per Second Films, Mumbai (“Iqbal & the Jewel of India”) unveiled its first venture with Australia to provide the production services in India at Cannes, alongside the announcement of the Indian incentives.

Sri Lankan filmmaker Prasanna Vithanage (Busan selection Children of the Sun) will advise Frames Per Second Films on the project.

Rakasree Basu, CEO of Frames Per Second Films, said: “I welcome the newly announced incentive for foreign film and television productions by the Indian government. This will certainly encourage and enrich any foreign productions planning to shoot in India with knowledgeable and competent Indian cast and crew. This initiative will motivate foreign filmmakers to explore cross-cultural workspaces, encourage collaborative learning of filmmaking practices and make India an attractive filming location for international productions. It is indeed a good start for India as the country of honor at Cannes.”

Maynard is currently casting and financing the film in Sydney. Filming in India is scheduled for January 2023, followed by Sydney and the film will be released in January 2024.

Maynard said: “I am working with writer/director S. Shakthidharan with an amazing new talent and welcome Sri Lankan director, writer and producer Prasanna Vithanage to join the Frames Per Second Films team who shares his extensive South Asia experience with us Australian creatives. [S. Shakthidharan] is a great co-worker, generous, mischievous and funny too. And he has something to say.”

The Laughter of Lakshmi is supported by Screen Australia. “S Shakthidharan is a powerful storyteller and we are proud to support his debut feature film with this unique and emotional drama that sheds light on the Sri Lankan diaspora in Australia,” said Grainne Brunsdon, Screen Australia’s Head of Content .

https://variety.com/2022/film/asia/the-laugh-of-lakshmi-indian-filming-incentives-1235269412/ “Laughter of Lakshmi” gets new Indian filming incentives

Charles Jones

Charles Jones is a 24ssports U.S. News Reporter based in London. His focus is on U.S. politics and the environment. He has covered climate change extensively, as well as healthcare and crime. Charles Jones joined 24ssports in 2021 from the Daily Express and previously worked for Chemist and Druggist and the Jewish Chronicle. He is a graduate of Cambridge University. Languages: English. You can get in touch with me by emailing: charlesjones@24ssports.com.

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