Indian tourism minister K Chiranjeevi is hoping to take advantage of cinema to generate interest in various tourist destinations in the country and revealed that a new campaign, known as "Land of Pi", will be launched in the overseas markets.
Announcing several initiatives for promoting "film tourism" through films shot in India, Chiranjeevi said a "Land of Pi" campaign would be launched soon across all media, including print, online, electronic and outdoor, to promote Puducherry and Munnar as tourist destinations.
According to this campaign, "Land of Pi" posters produced by Tourism Ministry will be displayed worldwide through the India tourism offices overseas. These would also be put on the "Incredible India" website and the websites of the Puducherry and Kerala Tourism Departments.
Luxury buses plying between Chennai and Puducherry and Kochi and Munnar will be branded with "Land of Pi" creatives.
Special "Land of Pi" tours and walking trails will be organized for tourists visiting Puducherry and Munnar. Maps depicting these tours have already been produced.
Short films and virals on the tourist attractions in Puducherry and Munnar, which have been depicted in the film, have been created and one being put on Youtube and other Social Media networks.
"Land of Pi" contests will be organized online, with two prizes given every month. The prize would be a holiday package to Puducherry or Munnar, including air tickets to Chennai / Kochi and local hospitality.
A boat that hints at "Life of Pi", with a stuffed toy tiger will be permanently placed at two prominent locations in Puducherry, to provide a photo opportunity to visiting tourists. One location will be a child-safe shallow water near Puducherry's Paradise Island and the other the soon-to-be-inaugurated Puducherry airport.
T'shirts and caps branding the two lands of Pi will be produced and distributed. Online video games will be made as part of the campaign. The campaign will be undertaken in English as well as in French, German, Chinese, Spanish and Japanese.
Road shows for promoting tourism to the country will be organized in China and Taiwan, where the film "Life of Pi" has been very well received. Mr. Ang Lee is of Taiwanese origin.
The widely acclaimed film "Life of Pi" has been partly shot in the beautiful locales of Puducherry (Pondicherry) and Munnar in Kerala.
In order to enable viewers of the film to visit the two regions shown in the film, Chiranjeevi held a meeting last month with the Secretaries of Tourism of Puducherry and Kerala along with Tour Operators of the region, immediately after it was observed that the film had highlighted awareness of the two regions.
K. Chiranjeevi has already announced special National Tourism Awards for Ang Lee, Director and Yann Martel, author of the Book "Life of Pi", for promoting India through the film.