"People say that we do not make enough good movies. But, I want to ask, who endorses such cinema when they do get made? Audience does not understand the pains we filmmakers take to bring a good story to screen but it is very easy to complain," Anurag said.
The 'Dev D' helmer drew parallels from the western audience to describe the apathy of their Indian counterpart towards films which are not the regular Bollywood dosage of song-and-dance and escapist 'masala'.
"The general complaint from the Indian audience we hear about these films is that 'it is slow' while in west these films get packed houses and the audience sit through the entire the film," Anurag said at a recent interaction with students at the Jawaharlal Nehru University campus.
"I know what a tough time I went through after making 'Black Friday'. Films like 'Paan Singh Tomar' had to wait for more than a year to see their release in theatres, and that too only after we started promoting the films through word-of-mouth and on social media like Twitter," Anurag said.
Noted filmmaker Sudhir Mishra, who recently made 'Yeh Saali Zindagi', criticized the Indian audience for not endorsing the efforts of filmmakers who go out on their limbs to bring different stories to the fore.
Sudhir said, "The exhibitors will not show films if the audience don't watch them. You complain why films like 'Hazaaron Khwaishein Aisi' do not get made. And, when they do get made, who comes to watch them in theatres?"
"Cans of 'films' in the industry made by various filmmakers are still lying unopened because there are no takers. In fact, more than me its my office which is celebrating the success of 'Gangs of Wasseypur' as they believe now other such films might see the light of day," Anurag added.
But the director said it's only the endorsement of the audience that can materialise the making of such cinema without compromising their artistic integrity as there is too much pressure on filmakers from the production side to cater to popular taste.
"I did not want to put the 'Gangs of Wasseypur- Part II' trailer in Part I but I was asked to incorporate it though I knew it would take away the mystery of what was to come ahead," Anurag said.
"Indian audience talk about cinema like journalists but when it comes to watching them in theatres, behave like mere consumers," singer-songwriter Swanand Kirkire added.