Srinagar: With improvement in security situation and a decline in militancy, Jammu and Kashmir Governor N N Vohra has said the valley will "very soon" be the first choice for shooting films again.
"Very soon the Valley will be back in full bloom and Kashmir will be once again the first choice for shooting of films as it used to be," Vohra said addressing a four-day children`s film festival `Lukchaar` here yesterday.
Vohra was the chief guest at a special programme titled `Gaash`, campaign against drug addiction, organized on sidelines of the ongoing Film Festival.
Kashmir valley was a prime destination for Bollywood filmmakers in the decade of 1960s, 1970 and 1980s. However, the region with its stunning mountain peaks, green meadows and gushing water was shunned by the film industry after the insurgency picked its pace in the state in 1990s.
With the decline in violence in recent years, Bollywood has cautiously returned to Kashmir. There has been a marginal increase in the number of films shot in here over the past four years.
Recent films shot in Kashmir include Jimmy Shergill and Minissha Lamba starrer `Yahaan`, Sanjay Dutt and Bipasha Basu starrer `Lamha`, Vishal Bharadwaj`s `Saat Khoon Maaf` and Piyush Jha`s `Sikandar`.
Some of the classics filmed in Kashmir include `Andaaz`, `Mere Sanam`, `Junglee`, `Phir Wohi Dil Laya Hoon`, `Do Badan`, `Arzoo`, `Kashmir Ki Kali`, `Kal Aaj Aur Kal`, `Silsila` and `Roti`.
Filmmaker Imtiaz Ali, who was in the valley this year to shoot his new film `Rockstar` starring Ranbir Kapoor, said he received strong support from people in Kashmir during the shooting of his recent film.
"The strong support we received from the people during the shooting of Rockstar in the Kashmir Valley has encouraged others to shoot their films in Kashmir," Ali - known for films like `Jab We Met`, `Socha Na Tha` and `Love Aaj Kal` - said at the festival.