Sheena Morjaria may well be a name not known to many but the lady herself is ready to become a household name. Morjaria��was born and��bred in the UK and currently��runs a boutique studio, Flick the Switch (FTS),��in the hustle and bustle of Mumbai. The studio seeks to become a one-stop solution in working with independent filmmakers to aid them��with financing and also gaining exposure to a wider audience outside of India. On the flip side, FTS is also able to provide filmmakers from outside India help in terms of services and resources needed to��further their projects within the sub-continent. BizAsia caught up with Morjaria to explore more about this very fresh, innovative and promising venture.
What inspired you to set up FTS?
I was an Investment banker, but growing up I was involved in the creative arts. I was working in mergers and acquisitions but always felt that I was never able to explore the creative elemt of my personality fully. I wanted to create a business that allowed me to combine both sides of my skill set and interest. So what initially started out as a favour to a friend on the weekends soon turned into a fully fledged business.
Is there a specific aim you set out to achieve – maybe a particular production house you wish to work with?
In India I very much respect the direction that Debarker Banerjee is heading in. I think that after one or two more films we will finally have an independent Indian film director who will put independent cinema on the map. My aim is to create a thriving, profitable and globally recognised and respected independent film industry in India.
How did you go about setting up a team with the right links?
For me, collaboration is very important. Working with people who share my vision and goals has been the key to driving my business forward. However I have always been careful to do my research and work with people who I have met through��my connections and reputable sources. And I am happy to say I now have a fantastic team in both Indian and the UK and am in the process of establishing some key relationships in the US as well to add that arm to the business.
What – in your words – is the main benefits of FTS for industry folk?
FTS can provide unique access, navigation and in-depth knowledge of the Indian media landscape. Having been operational in India for four years, we have a fantastic insight into the wat the industry operates. We work very closely with key industry players to ensure that our network stays current and at the forefront of where the industry is heading. We also have access to the best Indian independent films -��we are working with the Berlin Film Festival, South By SouthWest Festival and the Chicago South East Asian Film Festical to ensure we can bring the best content to the global marketplace. Couples with a western upbringing and Indian cultural heritage makes both sides of the market comfortable in working with us.
Can you divulge in what kind of projects you hope to take on in the future?
We want to continue to work with Indian filmmakers to develop their projects for the global marketplace. We have a number of interntional co-productions in which we are partners. Australia, Switzerland and the US are just some of the countries we are working with, alongside representing the UK and India.
Do you feel your life experience in a western world gives you an edge… and how?
Absolutely. It enables my company to have a truly global view. I think that understanding the cultural nuances of difference countries is��very important when trying to do business. My western upbringing, Indian cultural heritage and the��fact that I get to travel extensively means I can bring that cross cultural knowledge to films and our way of doing business.
We are sure you will agree that Morjaris and FTS are definitely going places. Having recently signed a deal with Moxie Group for new Bengali film ‘Porichoi’, the only way is up. Stay tuned for more from Morjaria on BizAsia soon.