What Makes Releasing A Movie The Biggest Challenge?
My stint into film making began with Chhello Divas in 2015. The concept was great, the production values were excellent and the story was contemporary, dynamic and youthful. We were upbeat about the film. It was only after the post-production was completed that we had to face some hurdles. One, the censor board was uncomfortable with the film. While we managed to get the censor certificate, we had to mute some dialogues in the film.
Later, in 2016, I was involved with Buddha in a Traffic Jam. We had a great cast of characters such as Mahie Gill, Arunoday Singh, Anupam Kher and others. Vivek Agnihotri was the director and he took the major burden of promoting this film. The problems faced at JNU were nothing compared to Jadavpur University where we had to cancel the screening. The controversy this film generated before the release was a picture of many things I had to see; angry journalists who declared the film as already dead, protesting students, angry sabzi-mandi media debates, the list goes on.
Distribution deals were also tough nuts to crack. To negotiate with theatre owners is a nightmare when you aren’t armed with information about how previous films worked wonders and how this one will as well. Also, an entire marketing plan needed to be created and co-ordinated. Responses had to be noticed and replied to appropriately and hectic calls from investors were the order of the day. With all these experiences, I had developed a hardnosed, no holds barred approach to my work with The Tashkent Files which was released in 2019 and has now become a sleeper Superhit of 2019. With a cast comprising Mithun Chakraborty, Pankaj Tripathi, Naseeruddin Shah and others, the skeptics never knew what hit them! Just check out Anurag Kashyap’s tweet on this. It’s true.
In my life, I have faced many challenges and I have learned to temper myself with experience and discretion which I must always keep . There are more projects coming up for films and web series now and the horizon looks exciting. While simultaneously I keep an oversight into the daily office activities and the film projects that are still under discussion. Gosh! So many things to do even now!