Tamil News

Tamil Nadu Announces Lockdown Relaxations, Allows Film Shootings with Maximum Crew of 100 People

The Tamil Nadu state government, while further extending the lockdown imposed in the state due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic until June 28, announced a few relaxations, in a press release on Sunday. These relaxations include the permission to conduct film and TV serial shootings with a maximum capacity of 100 people.


The government has also granted permission to conduct post-production work for films and television shows.

“Film and TV serial shootings with a capacity of only 100 people are allowed to take place. It is mandatory for all the artists and technicians who are taking part in the shootings to undergo Covid-19 tests,” the press release read.

Speaking about the relaxations, director Karthik Thangavel, who is currently engaged in the pre-production work of his upcoming, yet-to-be-announced film, told Silverscreen India, “It is a tough task to shoot with only 100 people but we should be able to manage. It is like survival of the fittest. Films that can be shot with fewer people will resume production.”

He also added that shootings are permitted only in certain places, including Chennai and neighbouring areas such as Kancheepuram, Chengalpet, and Tiruvallur. “Hence, most big-budget films and those that have to go out-of-station to shoot will resume later, after mid-July, with the expectation that restrictions will be relaxed further.”

On his own plans, Karthik said, “I am currently engaged in research for my script. I had to extend my pre-production and location scouting time since there were many formalities over the last two months, like procuring e-pass for travel. The film will likely go on floors only by the end of the year. If, by that time, there are no restrictions in place, we may go with the usual crew.”


Editor KL Praveen, who is currently working on Silambarasan’s Maanaadu and Shiva-starrer Sumo in Tamil along with a couple of projects in Telugu, said, “Over the last year, the lockdown has brought a lot of changes in the way we operate. It pushed us to incorporate means that enable people to work remotely. For instance, we use services like WeTransfer to transfer files. After some initial hiccups, it has now become seamless. The last lockdown has taught us how to work and coordinate remotely, and it has enhanced our workflow overall.”

“I think it will become the norm in the future since it is convenient for everyone. And since it is all online and password-protected, piracy could also decrease. If I am sending the same file to multiple people, there are different passwords for each and there is also two-factor authentication. It is a fool-proof process,” the editor explained.

Praveen also told Silverscreen India that Sumo’s edit work has been completed, while the post-production work of Maanaadu is still pending.

The TN government has also granted permission to theatre owners to open their establishments once a week for maintenance, after procuring permission from respective tahsildars.

Speaking to Silverscreen India, Srither S, joint secretary of Tamil Nadu Theatres Association, said, “Maintenance work is essential to ensure theatres are in order when they are eventually allowed to reopen. We need to check the venue, seats, and toilets, and undertake necessary sanitation measures. Further, we should give our generators, projects, and air conditioners regular test runs. We have received permission to do such kinds of maintenance work from the government.”


Srither believes that the maintenance order is a “green signal” from the government that theatres will be allowed to reopen “very soon”.

“It is a positive sign. We are expecting favourable orders from the honourable Chief Minister Thiru MK Stalin because his government is very co-operative with the cinema industry. We are expecting speedy remedy as early as possible,” he said.

With neighbouring states such as Kerala and Telangana gearing up for theatrical releases, Srither added that the Tamil film industry has about 100 films ready for release.