Anupam Sharma.

A new council has been established with the aim of building stronger ties between the Australian and Indian film industries.

Director Anupam Sharma will chair the inaugural board of the Australia India Film Council (AIFC), which includes vice chair and former head of Film Victoria Julie Marlow, and producers Sheila Jayadev, Jomon Thomas, Deepti Sachdeva, Kartik Mohandas and Vikrant Kishore.

The council will work collaboration with practitioners, producers, investment bodies and seek support from government bodies for the benefit of Australian screen professionals.

In a statement, Sharma spoke of the mutual benefits both industries could stand to gain from engaging with each other.

“India is one of the most prolific film industries in the world and Australia is one of the most professional film industries in the world,” he said.

“By providing a platform for the two to engage, AIFC will be able to encourage a whole new era of innovation, diversity, and collaboration for the benefit of Australian film industry.”

Prime Minister Scott Morrison was among those to send a message of support for the council’s launch, noting the timeliness of its formation.

“At a time when our countries are facing profound social and economic challenges, initiatives like the Australia India Film Council (AIFC) are an opportunity to explore our capabilities and build on the special, growing dosti between our two countries,” he wrote.

Indian High Commissioner in Australia Manpreet Vohra was also optimistic about the AIFC’s future.

“As our bilateral ties deepen and diversify, it is good to see the establishment of a dedicated body like the AIFC to concentrate on film links between the two countries,” he said.

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