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Mani mantra for B-school

Calcutta, Sept. 9: The Indian film industry is an “ideal” option for the managers of tomorrow, Mani Ratnam told IIM students today.

“Films are ideal for man- agement graduates. You need to know a little about everything,” the film-maker, an MBA himself, said to a deafening cheer.

The former student of Jamnalal Bajaj Institute of Management Studies, Mumbai, got into films by accident. Disillusionment while working as a management consultant made him look for alternatives and it was then that he started writing a script.

“The safety net of a man- agement degree gave me the opportunity to take the risk,” said Mani Ratnam, who had till then written nothing more than “a letter to my father asking for money”.

At the talk held by the Entrepreneurship Cell and Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation, Mani Ratnam spoke about the opportunities and challenges for management students aspiring to make the cut in the entertainment industry.

“A film has everything that a venture has. It needs managerial skills. One needs to look into logistic management, financial management and manpower management while doing a project,” said the man whose filmography includes Roja, Bombay, Dil Se, Yuva and Guru.

The film industry is slowly becoming corporate and an investment option, he added.

But while delivering the goods might always fetch the rewards in some industries, it might not be so in films.

“Mani Ratnam, the director, was the biggest draw. But the fact that he comes from the management background was an added attraction,” said second-year student Vijay Menon. “It gave us the feeling that we have a scope in alternative careers such as films, an industry which would appear distant and unrealistic as a career option for most B-School students.”

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