The Ministry of Information and Broadcasting on Tuesday appointed filmmaker Shekhar Kapur president of Pune’s Film and Television Institute of India Society and chairperson of the institute’s governing council. He will succeed television producer-director BP Singh, best known as director of the popular TV series CID.
Kapur’s tenure will last till March 3, 2023, according to the Hindustan Times.
Born on December 6, 1945, Kapur is known for his work in both Hindi and international cinema. His credits include the Hindi film Masoom (1983), Mr India (1987) and Bandit Queen (1994) and the British titles Elizabeth (1998) and Elizabeth: The Golden Age (2007). Kapur’s last film was the American drama Passage (2009).
He was awarded the Padma Shri, the fourth highest civilian award in India, in 2000, and the Golden Globe Award in 1998. His historical biopics on Queen Elizabeth, Elizabeth (1998) and Elizabeth: The Golden Age (2007), have earned him international acclaim, with the former winning the BAFTA Award for Outstanding British Film and both winning an Academy Award.
Information and Broadcasting Minister Prakash Javadekar also tweeted about the appointment. “Happy to inform that renowned international film personality Shekhar Kapur has been appointed as the President of FTII Society & Chairman of Governing Council of FTII,” he tweeted. “Mr Kapur, who has a vast experience, will add more value to the Institute. I am sure everybody will welcome his appointment.”
Besides Kapur and BP Singh, actor Anupam Kher held the position of the institute’s chairperson in 2017, succeeding television actor Gajendra Chauhan, whose term was mired in controversy. Kher resigned in October 2018, citing a busy schedule due to his international assignments.
The Film and Television Institute of India was set up by the Centre in 1960 in the premises of the erstwhile Prabhat Studios in Pune. In October last year, more than 200 alumni of the institute had written to the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, urging it to reverse the institution’s decision to stop heads of departments from joining its academic council.
The alumni said in the past few years the administration had adopted an “unnecessarily antagonistic attitude” towards students and the faculty. They called it a “misinformed attempt at ‘reform’”, which resulted in an extremely unhealthy atmosphere at the institution.