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Tunisia with its unique diversity beckons Indian film markers

Tunisia stretches from the Meditteranean Sea to the Sahara desert – as an ideal location for Indian film-makers. The country has a solid infrastructure due to the well-developed tourist industry and visa free travel for Indians has opened new oppo...

, ET Bureau|
Nov 17, 2019, 11.35 AM IST
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Tunisia plans to boost regional film tourism by preserving a desert set built for the Star Wars prequels in the late 90s.
NEW DELHI: Tunisia is a country about the size of California but a tremendous variety of scenery from forests, mountains, beaches and desert to industrial landscapes and souks and is willing to offer Indian film makers incentives and attractive offers to shoot their films.

Tunisia stretches from the Meditteranean Sea to the Sahara desert – as an ideal location for Indian film-makers. The country has a solid infrastructure due to the well-developed tourist industry and visa free travel for Indians has opened new opportunities for Indian film makers to explore Tunisia as the new destination. Tunisia plans to boost regional film tourism by preserving a desert set built for the Star Wars prequels in the late 90s.

“The North African country features 3000-year-old history and is a democracy. Tunisia is the answer for travellers looking to travel to a new destination. Tunisian people love Indian culture and its Mediterranean climate makes it suitable for travel round the year. For tourism from India, cities such as Tunis (capital), Sousse, Hammamet, Bizerte, Tozeur and Tabarka are perfect with hotels varying across categories,” Tunisian Ambassador to India Nejmeddine Lakhal told ET.

The Ambassador listed some key reasons for shooting an Indian movie in Tunisia. This includes Strategic Location; Landscape; Climate; Historical Sites and Ruins; Modern infrastructures and logistics; Talented and experienced technicians; competitive prices and importantly speedy shooting procedures.

Lakhal said, "There are movies like Star Wars shot in Tunisia. Indian filmmakers should explore this opportunity. When it comes to technician, actors, accommodations, locations, the logistics and documentations are very competitive. You have exemption and custom clearance in 24 hours. One thing you have to do is connect with the movie production team in Tunisia and they will do anything for you. If you need equipment, technician, tourist certificate from the army that will take one week to 12 days."

Lakhal recommends Indian directors to work with some of his own country’s best, like Nouri Bouzid, Dora Bouchoucha, and Moufida Tlatl. “India and Tunisia are both diverse nations and this leads to creativity. The Tunisian population is a blend of Phoenician, Roman, Byzantine, Arabic, Ottoman and European peoples,” pointed out the Ambassador.

Over the last few years the Federation of Film Societies of India has organised the Tunisian Film Festival at different cities of the country like Kolkata, Jamshedpur, Imphal, Guwahati, Delhi, Chandigarh, Mumbai, Pune, Hyderabad, Bengaluru, Pondicherry, Madurai, Thiruvanathapuram, Kochi, Thrissur and some other places to propagate the film culture of Tunisia.

Tunisian movies also had a special session last year at IFFI in Goa. And Tunisia was focus country last year at Kolkata film festival.

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