For most of us who don’t work in the entertainment industry, TV and films are all about glamour and glitz. However, there is a dark, other side to the coin as well.
A large number of people who work here in other capacities get a very raw deal. In a bid to create awareness about the lack of proper health, sanitation and fire safety facilities at most film and TV sets, actor body CINTAA tied up with film-maker Opender Chanana, for a special screening of his documentary on the same, titled, Living On The Edge.
The one-hour-long heart-wrenching film chronicled several cases where technicians suffered due to improper working conditions. A 27-year-old editor suffered from a serious brain disorder, allegedly, due to long working hours. Another stuntman snapped his spinal cord during rehearsals. TV superstar Divyanka Tripathi talked about her enduring torture, when she once had to work despite a slip disc, due to a 30-days-a-month contract.
After the screening, Sr Joint Secretary of CINTAA, Amit Behl, spoke of the need for all stakeholders (channels, production houses, actors and other craftsmen) to come together. “It is ironical that international channels and production houses, which are very strict about safety norms abroad, are so lax out here. However, I wish to add that certain production houses, like Hats Off and Edit II, go out of their way to make things better for their respective units.”
“The sad part is that most of us knew all this was happening, yet, did not really pay attention. But not anymore. If we actors spend 12 hours on set, other department guys have to be on set for three hours more.”
“It is very important that we, in Western India, (Hindi film and TV industry), which is the largest producer of content, first set our own houses in order, before joining with other regional industries and making a pitch before the government for regulation.”
Amit says, “We are in talks with Opender, who has been at the forefront of reforms since years, to release an edited version online to create more awareness.”
“We need to work out a general safety plan, fire norms, and also have routine sanitation inspections. Let’s all forgo a portion of our profits for the general good. CINTAA is in talks with producers and channels for the same,”states Amit.
“We are not against anybody. We need to work together, for, if any mishap occurs, the whole unit, right from the producer to the actor to the spot boy, is affected. So why let things reach such a pass in the first place.”
Great going, CINTAA Team!!