David MacDougall
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Clearing customs
in The art of the observer
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In 1988, prior to making the film Photo Wallahs (1991), the filmmakers David and Judith MacDougall had to import their filming equipment into India. This chapter provides a narrative account of the process of clearing the equipment through Indian customs, written immediately after the event. The importation involved numerous documents to be tendered and signed by officials, as well as the inspection of the equipment, carried out in the heat of an Indian summer, all this in competition with other people trying to get similar clearances for their goods. The hero of the piece is the clearing agent, Mr Gandhi, who has been doing this sort of thing for years.

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The art of the observer

A personal view of documentary


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