Television

NDTV to expand documentary slot from mid-March

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NEW DELHI: NDTV 24X7, which had commenced a weekly half-hour slot for short films after it entered into a partnership with the Prasar Bharati-supported Public Service Broadcasting Trust (PSBT) last month, has now decided to increase the telecast of documentaries from mid-March.

At present, NDTV telecasts the short and reality films each week on its flagship channel NDTV 24x7 as part of the series Documentary 24x7, every Thursday at 9:30 pm and repeated on Sundays at 1:30 pm.

NDTV Producer Gunjan Jain - who recently attended the Mumbai International Film Festival for documentary, short and animation films to scout for good films – told indiantelevision.com that the half-hour and one hour slots may be alternated depending on the length of the films received by the channel for telecast.

She also clarified that though the initial agreement had been with PSBT, the channel was also prepared to telecast documentaries by other producers. She had seen some good films in Mumbai and submitted her report to the channel.

According to a PSBT spokesperson, the partnership provides an ideal platform for the exploration of myriad issues that these documentaries deal with, and for enhancing the viewership of powerful and insightful content. The effort will go a long way in creating and encouraging a public culture of documentary appreciation and engagement.

Renowned filmmaker and PSBT Chairperson Adoor Gopalakrishnan said, “We welcome exposure for the excellent films produced by PSBT on a private commercial channel. With the terrible decline in the standards of commercial television, this is a very praiseworthy effort by NDTV. Our films are produced by independent filmmakers, most of them young, partially funded by Doordarshan. The future for public broadcasting lies in efforts such as these that demonstrate the potential of public-private partnerships.”

PSBT is a non-profit trust that represents the confluence of energies to foster a shared public culture of broadcasting that is exciting and cutting edge. PSBT’s pioneering work revolves around the creation of independent films that are socially responsive and representative of democratic values. It seeks to situate a new vocabulary and activism at the very heart of broadcasting in India and this endeavour will open up new spaces for engagement with the form and content of documentary films in the mainstream public media.

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