The Film and Television Institute of India (FTII) needs a good administrator, more than a good actor, its former Chairman Gajendra Chauhan said in reaction to veteran actor Anupam Kher’s appointment to the post on Wednesday.
Chauhan completed his tenure in March. His appointment had triggered student protests at the Pune-based institute. Anupam had then said that the FTII needed a person with much more qualifications than Chauhan had as a producer, director or actor.
On Wednesday, Chauhan, however, extended his good wishes to Anupam.
‘I convey my good wishes to him and I want to move on in life. What happens is that when somebody is given a post, then there are a lot of options behind it. I was also appointed from different options. A lot of people didn’t get to see my work. In FTII, it’s more important to be a good administrator than a good actor,’ Chauhan told IANS over phone from Mumbai.
‘He is quite experienced and runs his own (acting) institute (Actor Prepares) in Mumbai. So, I think he will be able to handle it quite nicely. I wish all the best to Anupamji and wishes he will complete all the work, which I left due to the end of my chairmanship,’ he added.
Appointed in 2014 to head the prestigious body, Chauhan, a well-known film and television personality, took charge only in January 2016 when he entered the FTII campus for the first time and chaired the Governing Council meeting.
His appointment was followed by massive protests by FTII students and ex-students and a 139-day strike demanding his removal from the post.
Chauhan, who said he himself had a ‘lot of administrative qualifications’, insisted that he had not been axed as claimed by a section of the media.
‘I have run the administration of the Cinema and Television Artists Association for 22 years. That’s why I was able to do a lot of work during my tenure. The CAG report, which was submitted in Parliament has a line, ‘The best work at FTII was done under the chairmanship of Gajendra Chauhan.’ That’s like a certification of my work. What else do I need?’ he said.
Veteran Anupam Kher is new FTII Chairman
Anupam Kher, an actor with a repertoire of over 500 movies including international projects, was on Wednesday named Chairman of the prestigious Film and Television Institute of India (FTII) in Pune. The film industry hailed the move.
Official sources confirmed Anupam’s appointment. He will succeed the controversial Gajendra Chauhan, whose appointment had triggered student protests.
Anupam’s wife Kirron Kher, an actress and BJP MP from Chandigarh, told Times NOW: ‘I’m very happy. Of course, it’s a challenging job for anybody. It’s not going to be an easy job. These chairmanships are crown of thorns. Here, people do get against you, but I am sure Anupam will be able to take them along because he is an extremely talented person.’
Anupam, who began his acting career with ‘Saaransh’ in 1984, also has his own acting institute Actor Prepares.
Kirron said Anupam was the right choice to head the FTII, which provides training in acting, direction and other technical aspects of film making in a country which is one of the largest producers of movies.
‘My husband is a very fine actor. He has been in the film industry for so many years. He is very capable of (being FTII head).
‘He has been teaching acting for so long. He is the only person who earlier headed CBFC, then National School of Drama and now has been appointed Chairman of FTII.
‘So, I am a very proud wife today. I would like to thank the government and the Information and Broadcasting Ministry,’ she said.
Asked what she meant by ‘crown of thorns’, she said: ‘I meant the CBFC, not FTII.’
Filmmaker Madhur Bhandarkar tweeted: ‘Heartiest congratulations to Anupam Kher for being appointed as the Chairman of FTII.’
Filmmaker Pritish Nandy called it an ‘excellent change’ at FTII. ‘Finally, the government is listening to us.’
Actor Kabir Bedi said Anupam ‘would do wonders’ in his new role.-IANS