The Telegraph
Saturday , January 12 , 2013
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Bollywood directors offer filmmaking tips

Jan. 11: Four Bollywood directors interacted with city residents today, sharing their views on filmmaking and the Northeast.

Dibakar Banerjee, director of Khosla Ka Ghosla, Oye Lucky! Lucky Oye!, Love Sex aur Dhokha and Shanghai; Zoya Akhtar, director of Luck By Chance and Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara; Reema Kagti, director of Honeymoon Travels Pvt Ltd and Talaash; and Anusha Rizvi, director of Peepli Live, shared their experiences on filmmaking with the audience on the premises of Anuradha Cineplex.

The directors have come to take part at the Brahmaputra Valley Film Festival, which was inaugurated this evening at Anuradha Cineplex.

Akhtar and Kagti will also take part in a workshop on scriptwriting and screenplay tomorrow at 11am at Shradhanjali Kanan to guide aspiring filmmakers.

Banerjee said having gone through some of the short films sent to the festival, he learnt a lot about the Northeast. “In the films I saw the Northeast from close quarters. The five minutes of crafted beauties (short films) unravelled the region in front of me,” he said.

Assam girl Kagti said, “I do see a huge difference between the Northeast and mainland India. The region has been neglected by the Centre. The time has come for people here to stand up and do what they want.”

The audience asked why directors from Bollywood do not come to the Northeast to shoot movies here despite the fact that the region has so many “wonderful locations” and “full of themes for good movies”.

The directors said shooting films in the Northeast simply doubles the production cost. “The equipment necessary for shooting are not available close by. You will have to bring them from outside the state that doubles the cost,” one of them said.

Kagti, on the other hand, said the responsibility also lies with the state governments. “The British government is an example of how to encourage directors. It gives director tax rebate and helps get permission without any difficulty.”

Gaurav Gogoi, organiser of the festival, said around 100 short films from across the Northeast were part of the festival. “Of these, 12 were selected for the final round. After watching them the four directors selected the top three films,” said Gogoi.

Tomorrow, the organisers will screen Peepli Live at 11am, Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara at 2pm and Talaash at 5pm as part of the festival. “After each show we will encourage the audience to interact with the directors,” said Gogoi.