financially stronger, and it will also help them seek new markets.
I wish to commend him and his team for having such a great idea and I hope to see local film producers get more support - financially and 'politically' - in providing us with products of high quality and worth viewing.
However, Naguib's (has his tenure been extended?) statement fell short of revealing the problems faced by Finas in attending to the needs of the industry.
His plan to call for a roundtable seminar involving local and foreign players on Sept 20 is good but will not meet the objectives of addressing the woes of new and small industry players if they fail to deliberate on the subject.
Finas has too much politics within. With a few grants in hand to help boost the local film industry, some big shots play dominant role by deciding to whom should the financial assistance be channeled. And of course, in many cases, we have noticed the same group of producers getting the grants.
Some people may get more than a single grant in two or three years. For instance, a RM3 million was given to a producer or company to produce a lousy-RM400,000 film which failed to attract enough audience at cinemas.
When the same producer applied for another RM3 million grant for his RM500,000 film a few months later, he got the approval.
To Naguib, I know how 'Nasi Lemak' got such a grant from Finas. I also know how this few producers who have strong connection with Finas 'top insiders' got their grant after grant on the back of their low-quality production.
I also know how a few new players with a brilliant and high-quality films were denied any chance of getting such grants although they applied. In fact, to get Finas' pitching' on their product will take a long time or not at all.
Another thing. Who controls local cinemas? Answer me!
Finas itself finds it so difficult to get a cinema slot for local films as they (the cinema owners) are more keen in foreign movies, especially from Hollywood and Chinese movies that are able to draw more audience.
But do not blame them as business is business. A business without profits will lead to nowhere. And so are our local films. If the same group of producers who received Finas grants could not notch a good return from their product, you better stop giving them the financial assistance.
There are new players who know how to improve and uplift the local film industry to a level compatible with others but Finas has never invited them for a talk or dialogue. Its always the same pool of 'established and rich' players who often rub shoulder with them.
Be a true professional, Finas! While some people need only a simple application for your grant, others were forced to get strong recommendation from ministers and also the palace. What actually is your problem in helping them?
I do hope to see changes in Finas approach in dealing with local film industry and its players, irrespective of whether they are new or already seasoned. Sometimes we have to admit the fact that a boy speaks better than a man!