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Dhananjayan talks about BOFTA and its future plans

Blue Ocean Film and Television Academy (BOFTA), the popular film institute in Chennai suburbs, has successfully completed its first year in the field of film education. The convocation ceremony for the first batch of students happened recently in a grand manner. With regard to that, we catch up with the Managing Director of BOFTA, Dhananjayan. G, to know more.


The first batch of students have graduated, and BOFTA is all set to step into its second year. How does it feel?

It feels great. I am so happy about it. When we planned to start the film institute, everyone was doubtful if this would click. They thought it would be very difficult to make experienced directors teach, but now it feels great to have achieved this feat. Film schools have celebrity directors and actors take guest lectures, but BOFTA instead forms the teaching department with celebrity directors and masters. This is the first film school in India to have this practice, where masters take the class on a daily basis. Due to this, students get to interact with many legends and experienced directors, from which, they learn a lot. They also get a wide range of knowledge and exposure about films and film-making. 


What will be your piece of advice to your first set of students?
Well, we always tell our students to assist an established film maker or a cinematographer, with respect to their field of specialisation. Only when they go out to the field, they will understand the practicality of film making. So, after passing out from BOFTA, we advise them to go out and assist some established director for a year, and from thereon, begin their film career. Only then, they will understand the film trade and film making nuances.


We've seen so many directors through masterclass. Will we see the same in acting and cinematography too?
Yes, we do have so many people coming in and teaching cinematography. People like Santosh Sivan, Natty, Mahesh Muthuswamy, have taught our students. Many other cinematographers will follow in the next years. And with Nasser sir taking care of the acting department entirely, what do we have to worry about? Directors like Bhagyaraj and Mahendran (who are also actors) do give their timely inputs to the students. 


Let us talk about online courses. How did the idea of online courses strike you?
Through Facebook, I used to get feedbacks and messages from people in foreign countries who expressed their interest in learning. Passionate people residing in foreign countries, might not be able to attend the course here in the campus. So, that is when it tempted me to start with this online classes idea.


Any new courses to be offered in the coming months?
We are already having weekend classes for direction. Now, from October, we are starting weekend classes for cinematography too. We are not starting courses on sound editing and VFX because those courses need much time to learn. We cannot teach that in a short period of six months or a year. So, we mainly concentrate on direction, cinematography, editing, and acting.


How do you see BOFTA in the next five years?

For sure, in the next five years, BOFTA will be one of the biggest film institutes in India. We are also planning to launch our institute in places like Bangalore, Hyderabad, Mumbai. Masters from their respective states will teach the students.

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Dhananjayan talks about BOFTA and its future plans

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