Placements at all-time low, FTII looks for private sector tie-ups

The Film and Television Institute of India (FTII), which has been facing competition from the private sector finishing schools for acting in Mumbai, has proposed to tie up with the latter.

Under consideration at the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting is a proposal put up by FTII for a collaboration with Subhash Ghai's Whistling Woods International based in Goregaon, Mumbai.

Ironically, it is the acting course the most talked about at FTII that has prompted this move as its students are facing severe placement problems.

Modalities for such an alliance are being sought, with the Pune-based institute seeking an assurance from its private sector counterpart for placement of its acting stream students.

"The suggestion came from Whistling Woods recently that they would like to get associated with FTII for the training of their acting batch. Following this, I forwarded a proposal to this effect to the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting and am awaiting their opinion on this," Pankaj Rag, director FTII, told The Indian Express.

According to Rag, such a joint venture will make sense to FTII only if Whistling Woods can assure placement for a certain number of students from the premier institute. "Other students, be it in editing, directing and even screenplay, have no problems in landing jobs. Many in fact get jobs even with a year left to pass out, but the acting course students do not find it so easy. So if Whistling Woods guarantees good roles for even the first three students of our acting batch, this arrangement would be worth considering," said Rag.

Among the issues that will need to be ironed out is how students from FTII, with a modest fee structure can share space with those in Whistling Woods that commands a much costlier fee pattern that it justifies with better infrastructure, more facilities and better opportunities in the film world.

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