Considering we only opened our doors to TV and internet in 1999, filmmaking in Bhutan has grown at an impressive speed. Cinema halls in the capital are reserved till the next year for feature film screenings, and villages and towns outside Thimphu wait excitedly for feature films to do their rounds around the country. However, for some filmmakers or aspiring filmmakers, there is little, if no platform to screen work, which does not fit in the category of “feature film” or “TV program” (for our single broadcast station.) Because of this lack of platform, there is also a dearth of short film and documentary productions in Bhutan. And the common Bhutanese audience would not even know what these genres are. The Beskop Tshechu committee members found this dearth alarming and foreboding for our booming film industry, as short films and documentaries offer an important platform for filmmakers to explore their talent, vision and voice.
Further, short film and documentary are unique genres by themselves, allowing filmmakers to approach storytelling, personal expression, art and analysis with more alternative and experimental methods. And finally because short films or documentaries rarely promise financial returns, the commercial angle is automatically reduced, and the work is more sincerely from the maker’s heart. But because of the lack of financial returns, filmmaking and art, like all over the world, needs external recognition and support in order to grow and flourish. And all the more in Bhutan, where till date, there is no regularized form of support for creative filmmaking. No film festivals. No grants or recognition. No outlet to even share work. Beskop Tshechu was borne out of this immediate need to promote creative filmmaking in Bhutan and to help cultivate a new future for Bhutanese filmmakers.
Our main vision:
1) To provide a platform for filmmakers to share their artistic endeavors
2) To encourage and promote non-commercial filmmakers through awards, opportunities, recognition and networking.
3) Create a common ground and forum for like-minded producers and filmmakers to meet, discuss and learn from each other
4) Nurture a new viewing culture in Bhutan: nurture a new understanding, interest and appreciation for non-commercial and meaningful films and stories.
5) Encourage filmmakers to use video as a medium to express themselves and explore and analyze issues in the community and country they are concerned about