India’s successful filmmakers have decided to come together and make an anthropology film based on stories and experiences from the coronavirus pandemic. These five filmmakers are Anubhav SInha, Sudhir Mishra, Hansal Mehta, Ketan mehta and Subhash Kapoor. They are known for making critically acclaimed films like Article 15, Dharavi, Omerta, Mirch Masala and Jolly LLB.
Talking with Times of India, Anubhav SInha said,’“This is such an interesting time, you know – even though I realise interesting may not be the best word,” explains Anubhav, who is informally spearheading the collective effort. “Sudhir bhai’s driver had contracted COVID and he was unable to get a bed – and we were making all sorts of phone calls just to get him a hospital bed. Uss raat mere dimaag mein aaya ki humein usko document karna chahiye. And what better way to do it than different filmmakers looking at different things? Sudhir bhai ke pitaji ki death hui COVID period mein. We lost Irrfan – aur hum Irrfan ke janaaze par bhi nahi jaa paye. Nikloon ki nahi nikloon… Tigmanshu ko police se jhagda karna pada – he said main toh jaaonga, bhai hai mera!
Sharing about how he insisted Ketan Mehta to work in this project, he said,’ The corporate world doesn’t know who Ketan Mehta is. Unhone ‘Mirch Masala’ ka naam hi nahi suna, dekhna toh chhor do! I saw it a month back. Log mujhe bolte hain ki Anubhav makes feminist cinema, etc etc. I say look at ‘ Mirch Masala‘ – that’s what a film is! ‘ Thappad‘ is not a film – ‘ Mirch Masala‘ is a film! If I had any power, I would be chasing Ketan Mehta to make films all the time. I heard this story once about (Akira) Kurosawa not making a film for many years and (Quentin) Tarantino met him and asked him about it – and he said I don’t have funds. And Tarantino called up the studio and said ‘Hey, Kurosawa doesn’t have money to make a film – produce one!’ And then Kurosawa made his next film. This is an authentic story I believe… Today Ketan is not making films. Govind Nihalani is not making films – arrey yaar ‘Ardh Satya’ banai thi unhone! Sharam karo, doob maro, iss sheher mein Govind Nihalani ko film banane ko nahi mil raha ha.’
And he further shares the each of the five director shave started to work with their films scripts and they will try to start shoot by november. The directors said that they feel strongly for their anthology.