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BOLLYWOOD is one of the world's biggest film industries, producing over 1,000 movies every year.

The city of Mumbai in India is its major centre, the equivalent of Hollywood in Los Angeles.

The worldwide audience for Bollywood productions is an astonishing 3.6 billion people.

Its name comes from merging Bombay, the old name for Mumbai, and Hollywood and it refers to Hindi-language films.

The Irish film industry has long attempted to attract large-scale Bollywood productions to this country and its efforts are beginning to pay off.

However, reports earlier this month revealed Ireland was in danger of losing its first Hindi movie because the Government wouldn't issue visas. Zarah Shah, the film's producer, said the Department of Justice failed to issue visas to the Indian actors and crew.

The film was written about Ireland after Ms Shah convinced the director to shoot here rather than in England, where the film was originally set.

The audience for Bollywood films is growing and for the past two years Ireland has hosted an Indian Film Festival.

The Bollywood-inspired Slumdog Millionaire brought the industry to a wider audience, opening Hollywood's eyes to the potential of the market.

Bollywood is just part of the Indian film industry, which also has a thriving movie scene in other languages.

Many English films have also been produced by the directors in India.