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Film chamber threatens to halt production

By Our Staff Reporter

KOCHI, JAN. 31. The Kerala Film Chamber of Commerce has threatened to stop production from March 8 in case the Association of Malayalam Movie Artistes (AMMA) plans to take part in the star night programme organised by a private Malayalam television channel on March 7.

At a press conference here today, the Film Chamber president, Siyad Kokker, said that at the meeting of the Chamber held here, it was decided that all the shooting and post-production works would come to a halt from March 8, unless the AMMA withdraws from the programme.

The Chamber has taken the stand that any film produced after March 8, defying its decisions would not be given any financial assistance from the film exhibitors.

It has also warned of non-cooperation with the private television channel unless they cancel the March 7 programme.

The Chamber leaders were of the opinion that production could commence only when the escalating cost of production could be reduced in some way. Almost 40 - 60 per cent of the entire production costs are for the payment of the artistes, they pointed out. The Chamber would even think of fixing a ceiling for the remuneration that should be accepted by the film artistes, including the superstars.

Accusing the AMMA of breaching the agreement arrived at with the Film Chamber last year with the Malayalam Cine Technicians Association (MACTA) acting as mediators, the Chamber leaders said that there was no scope for further talks with the artistes' organisation since all the major issues had been discussed in detail before. The artistes had flouted all the conditions in the agreement including the one on getting the consent of the Chamber before participating in any public programmes like star nights which might be telecast by major channels.

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