Mumbai Film City hikes rental rates, IFTPC to approach Maha govt

Mumbai Film City hikes rental rates, IFTPC to approach Maha govt

Will the average 50 per cent hike in rentals make TV production unviable in the maximum city?

Mumbai Film City

Mumbai: Producers of films and TV shows in Mumbai's Film City received a jolt earlier this month. The Maharashtra Film Stage and Cultural Development Corp (MFSCDC) – which is in charge of the Goregaon-based facility - issued a circular stating that it had revised rentals of studios and outdoor locations on its premises from 1 July.

Some of the large indoor stages including Studio 16 (14,060 sq ft), Studio 7 (10,400 sq ft), Studio 5 (8455 sq ft) and Studio 11 have been seen rate hikes of a massive 53 per cent, 38 per cent, 26 per cent and 29 per cent. Ditto with outdoor locations such as Vishnu Maidan 1 (83,250 sq ft: 87 per cent jump), Josh Maidan 1-2 (1,40,000 sq ft: 57 per cent), Gate No. 1 to Adlab Road/Bus Stop (90,000 sq ft: 102 per cent ), Link Road – 1 (77 per cent) and Link Road – 2 (89 per cent).

This has got the production community’s goose. The Indian Film & Television Producers Council  (IFTPC ) – the producers association which has been at the forefront of workers and government negotiations - is currently gathering data from its producer members to present to the Maharashtra  deputy chief minister or chief minister on  how the hike is going to impact production of TV series in Hindi, Marathi and other languages.

Says IFTPC CEO Suresh Amin: “TV producers are really worried. This kind of rate hike has not happened in the last seven to eight years. TV producers have been faced with reduced or stagnant production budgets over the past two or three years even as they had to invest more to put in place increased Covid protection measures which were quite expensive. The current rate hike will only lead to making producing at Film City unviable as we are unsure whether broadcasters will be supportive and absorb the increased costs.”

“Most TV productions happen in Film City, Goregaon and TV serials shooting takes place  365 days a year,” he adds. “Meanwhile, a film shoot will happen for a maximum of 100 days using different outdoor locations that are largely unaffected by the rate change.”

Some of the  popular TV shows currently being filmed at FilmCity include Taarak Mehta Ka Ooltah Chashmah, Yeh Rishta Kya Kehlata Hai and India’s Laughter Champion.

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