News & Information From Northeast India

NE filmmakers must tell their own stories: Vishal Bhardwaj

Popular Bollywood director Vishal Bhardwaj said filmmakers from the northeast region must tell the stories of the region at the national level and beyond through their films, during his visit to the city.

The multifaceted filmmaker who extensively shot in Arunachal Pradesh and Assam for his last film ‘Rangoon’ also added though the locations are unexplored, proper infrastructure is needed for the outside filmmakers to come and shoot in the region.

“If you won’t tell your stories, nobody will. You have to tell your own stories by create your own filmmakers and by educating them. Because no one else is going to do that especially cinema. It’s always better to tell stories through the person who has lived it. Otherwise it sounds false,” said Bhardwaj who was in Guwahati to be a part of the 5th Brahmaputra Valley Film Festival.

Bhardwaj who first visited Assam in 1982 representing Uttar Pradesh junior cricket team also ruled out the notion of negligence towards northeast region by Bollywood filmmakers.

“There is nothing like that. Nobody is against anyone or nobody is isolating or neglecting somebody. The thing is that the mainstream filmmakers in Bollywood are not from northeast. You have to create filmmakers and film institutes and they should be at per technically with anyone and then the stories will be told,” Bhardwaj added.

On his experience on shooting ‘Rangoon’, Bhardwaj said that though the love of the locals was much, the infrastructure was an issue.

“I think it’s the most beautiful part of our country. It’s virgin and rugged. It’s unfortunate that it’s not yet explored but it’s fortunate for filmmakers like us who came and explore it for the first time. But infrastructure was an issue…like the hotels and roads are still coming up,” said the 52 year old director, producer, music composer, singer and writer.

Meanwhile, local icon Adil Hussain who was also a part of the event, said that it’s shame that the respective governments over the decades have failed to recognize film a form of art particularly in Assam and the northeast.

“It’s extremely unfortunate that we have very limited movie halls not just in Assam but across the region. If there is no hall to showcase the films, how will the filmmakers survive? Hats off to the filmmakers who have been continue making films for their sheer love for the art,” said Adil.

He also appealed to the corporate houses to go on public –private partnership mode to build new cinema halls across the region.

Image Credits: Surajit Sharma.

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