Posts tagged faruk kabir
By Taran Adarsh, August 24, 2010 – 08:33 IST
Another movie that’s sure to catch your attention when it releases is ALLAH KE BANDAY. The film, starring Naseeruddin Shah, Sharman Joshi, Atul Kulkarni and Faruk Kabir [who directs the film], tackles the hitherto untouched subject of young kids taking to crime and if the theatrical trailer is an indicator of what to expect from this film, be rest assured, an explosive story is about to unleash on celluloid this October.
Unlike most promos where the viewer remains clueless about the content of the film, the theatrical promo of ALLAH KE BANDAY gives you an insight of what to expect from the film, making the viewer aware of the content. Besides the promo, the writer also watched a music video, filmed on Kailash Kher, which has been collaborated with UNICEF. One is confident, people will hear more about ALLAH KE BANDAY in times to come!
They are young and bursting with enthusiasm. Five young directors making their debut this year tell us why it’s magical to be in the movies
Some of the best ideas in films in 2009 were seen in the ones made by debutant directors. Never mind the box-office results, the freshness and the willingness to experiment made all the difference.
With some big budget films with top names failing to make paisa vasool films, perhaps it’s time to turn to the first-timers to bring a new perspective.
Some leading production houses have placed their bets on these newbies in films featuring topline stars. Here are five of them who are waiting to open their accounts in the Bollywood dream factory.
‘I’ve wanted to do this for 10 years’
Calling card: Remake of Stepmom starring Kajol, Kareena and Arjun Rampal
Expected release: End of the year
Inspirations: Guru Dutt, Raj Kapoor, Sooraj Barjatya, Karan Johar
As a child Siddharth Malhotra remembers spending his pocket money of Rs 40-50 on buying Bombino video cassettes and audio tapes of the latest Hindi flicks. Films were his biggest craze, even then.
A true blue industry kid (Premnath is his grandfather, his dad, actor Prem Kishen set up Cinevista and the Kapoors are extended family), Siddharth grew up interacting with the likes of Hrishikesh Mukherjee and Vijay Anand.
So it comes as no surprise when he proclaims that he “lives, eats and breathes cinema”. The irresistible lure even led him to assist Vinod Chopra on Kareeb at the age of 15.
But the one movie that impacted him the most was Sooraj Barjatya’s Maine Pyar Kiya. “I forget the number of times I’ve watched it,” he says almost reverentially of the director whom he assisted on Vivah. Sooraj also taught him an important lesson: make a film in a milieu you are comfortable with and be true to it.
It’s a maxim Siddharth believes in completely as he directs his first film - the remake of Stepmom - for Karan Johar, an old family friend, whom he assisted on Kal Ho Na Ho and other films.
His sensibilities were also honed by television. “I love the ‘80s serials,” he says reminiscing the DD days of Katha Sagar, Gul Gulshan Gulfam and Junoon which his company produced. He himself created successful shows like Sanskriti and Sanjeevani when he took over Cinevista.
But when TV reached a lull (“I wasn’t comfortable making making saas-bahu serials”), Siddharth knew it was time to make a film. “I love films about relationships,” he says, swearing loyalty to the Bollywood school of thought. “I like watching the Fellinis or Kurosawas, but give me the Guru Dutts and Raj Kapoors any day,” he chuckles.
And now that the journey has begun, Siddharth wants to make the most of it. “My next script is also in place,” he laughs. But wouldn’t he rather wait for his first one to finds its place? “Well, this is something I have wanted to do for the last 10 years. Filmmaking has not only taught me the technicalities, it has helped me evolve as a person too.”
‘I am an adventurer’
Calling card: Allah Kay Banday starring Naseeruddin Shah, Atul Kulkarni, Sharman Joshi & himself
Expected release: September
Inspirations: Everyone from Raj Kapoor, Bimal Roy and Manmohan Desai to Hollywood Masters
It’s not often that the unpredictable Naseeruddin Shah not just says ‘yes’ to a first-time filmmaker after reading the script, but also enquires what role would he like to cast him in. But the veteran actor did exactly that when Faruk Kabir approached him with his script. “What luck na?” exults Kabir about his ‘social thriller’ Allah Kay Banday.
Faruk’s subject is certainly unusual - prison reform and kids caught in the vortex of crime. But more unusual are the inspirations behind it - the “real India”, glimpses of which he gathered during his travels over 27,000 kms across the country to shoot a documentary, Unheard Voices of the People of India for the NGO Action Aid.
From meeting a person in Varanasi who ran a school for children of prostitutes to Mumbai street children, Faruk came back, as he puts it, “a 1000 stories richer.” And the idea for a film crystallised.
More research followed, this time in juvenile prisons and the mean streets of our cities. “The kids I met were all very spunky and colourful. Their stories had to be told,” says Faruk.
He isn’t worried about the odious comparisons to City of God or Slumdog Millionaire. “They are good films to be compared to,” shrugs Faruk. “Besides, I have not made an edgy and racy film, not a dark, stark or preachy one.”
In fact, for all his socialist sensibilities, Faruk is vehemently opposed to preachy cinema. “Ultimately, a movie has to entertain, period,” he says.
This commercial grounding could also have something to do with his stints as assistant to Aziz Mirza and later Rajiv Rai which started when he was only 17. “I was this boarding school boy who felt claustrophobic in Mumbai. Filmmaking, I thought, would be a good way to channelise my restless energy!”
Later he winged to New York to train in filmmaking and 2-D animation but then returned and shot the documentary. “My main objective was to be a story-teller. And a lot of those stories came from newspapers,” says Faruk.
So while the stories are real, Faruk’s aspirations are clear: “I am a bit of an adventurer. Even if I just make 10 films I am proud of, and I die, I am fine with it.”
‘I am not the one for dark films’
Abhinav Singh Kashyap
Calling card: Dabanng starring Salman Khan, Arbaaz Khan and Sonakshi Sinha
For someone who is making his debut with a Salman Khan film, Abhinav Singh Kashyap keeps a pretty low-profile. His Dabanng has been in the news for several reasons. Sonakshi Sinha’s debut, Salman’s small-town cop act to name a few but the director would rather let his work speak.
“I’ve been directing for almost 11 years now,” he informs talking about his TV career where he directed serials like Rajneeti and Star Bestsellers. “TV gave me an opportunity to experiment with different genres,” he says. But films were a different ballgame. For someone who had a late initiation into Bollywood, Abhinav had mixed encounters with the industry.
He assisted Mani Ratnam on Yuva, which was great but then had a bitter experience with Jang, a film he wrote for Sanjay Gupta. “It didn’t turn out the way it was written,” he says. What sustained him throughout was his passion for writing.
Abhinav claims he writes best when he does it for himself. “Life inspires me. I have a lot of ideas and stories stored in my computer.” Dabanng, he says, was a script he had been itching to tell. The opportunity to direct it came when he approached Arbaaz Khan who was impressed enough to produce it. Then came Salman.
Needless to say, the script underwent changes to suit the star image. Doesn’t that compromise on his vision? “Not really,” he shrugs. “I believe it’s better to incorporate the star’s image in the story. Besides, Salman has a tremendous fan following.”
He admits a filmmaker has to often kow tow to market forces, but believes a balancing act can be achieved only “by making more films.” “The first film is the most difficult. Once it is released I’ll get more offers and then would be able to make it exactly the way I want.”
But he’s confident about Dabanng. “It’s not a stark or too real film. Anyway, I am not the one for dark, gritty cinema. I like my heroes to be winners!”
Cashing in on his break
Calling card: Break ke baad starring Imran Khan and Deepika Padukone
Expected release: End of the year
Inspirations: World cinema
It was his efficiency and enthusiasm as first AD to Kunal Kohli that fetched Danish Aslam his director’s cap.
The Kashmir-born Delhi educated Jamia graduate hailed from a family that was far removed from films (his father is a professor). But that didn’t quell his desire to dream big and enter big bad Bollywood.
Next step, naturally, was Mumbai where he began treading the familiar ground of assisting directors. A short schedule with filmmakers such as Asutosh Gowarikar (Swades) and Farhan Akhtar (Lakshya) only served to whet his appetite more.
He then assisted Kunal Kohli in Fanaa and Thoda Pyar Thoda Magic, which proved to be his turning point for he motivated him to think bigger. “He was a great first AD, he never let any of the problems reach me,” says Kohli.
So when Kohli turned producer, he decided to repose faith in his young assistant who already had his story idea ready.
The result is Break ke baad, another take on the age-old rom com genre. One wonders just how different can a love story be but the filmmaker insists it won’t just be a frothy take on relationships, but something that has layers and subtexts.
Danish’s strength, say observers, is his ability to provide solutions and options coupled with cool confidence and a calm mind.
Like many of his contemporaries, he is a worshipper of world cinema, but interactions with Kunal, a keen follower of the Bollywood tradition, has altered his sensibilities to a large extent.
Whether his take on romance finds flavour remains to be seen, but what matters is whether this ‘break’ takes him far on his filmi journey.
‘Direction has taught me patience’
Calling card: I Hate Luv Storys starring Imran Khan and Sonam Kapoor
Releasing: July 2
Influences: Karan Johar rom
I am very shallow, I am not very educated. Neither am I an intellectual. What you see is what you get,” shoots off Punit Malhotra laying off any pretences to being influenced by world cinema or attempting to make anything “intellectual”.
There is indeed no pretence about Punit. Ask him to describe himself and he says, tongue firmly in cheek: “I am a super good looking guy!… Just kidding! I am just happy-go-lucky.”
It is this sensibility that one gets a whiff of from the promos of the curiously misspelt I Hate Luv Storys. “Yes, it’s a bunch of young people working together. Definitely that energy will emerge,” he says, admitting to “feeling a little numb” as he awaits the first print of his film.
Well, there’s nothing to feel unconfident about. After all, it’s a dream for most filmmakers to be debuting with a Karan Johar film, get the hottest young stars on board and have a ready platform to zoom off.
But Punit, whose Bollywood connect begins with uncle Manish Malhotra, reacts quickly to the ‘luck’ factor in getting his break. “Hey, luck has nothing to do with it.
I worked with the production house for 10 years, assisted Karan on K3G and a host of films! Besides, I have worked with Amitji, Kajol, SRK etc. There can’t be a better training ground than that, can there?” Point noted.
But from assisting on films to directing one has had its impact on the youngster. For once, it has taught him the virtue of patience. “I am damn restless as a person, being director has taught me patience. There is so much co-ordination to do, people’s egos to handle… Secondly, you have to handle the anxiety.”
Stresses and anxieties apart, he clearly enjoys the power. “Especially since I have done the script, I get a lot more clarity. And no one can argue with you beyond a point,” he laughs. “But yes, I like being in control. I don’t even have a driver as I don’t like being driven around!”
For now though he’s enjoying the drive of the endless interviews and promotional activities. “I really don’t know what I will do next. I’d rather begin with a clean slate. Let’s see what happens next… anyway, I live for the moment.”