Why is reaching Oscars benchmark for Indian films, asks R Balki

Filmmaker R. Balakrishnan, popularly known as Balki, says the aim of Indian movies must be to entertain their audiences with good content, rather than constantly trying to vie for the Academy Awards.

R Balki
R Balki

Balki, acclaimed for directing movies like “Cheeni Kum” and “Paa”, was present at the Rotary Club of Bombay's WOW District Conference 2015, when he was asked whether he feels his next film “Shamitabh” could make the cut for Oscars.

To that, he said: "I firmly believe that the goal of a film is not whether it reaches the Oscars or not, because I don't think they (the jury at Oscars) understand a lot of things we do. I just believe that our films should be damn good for us.

"Why is our benchmark reaching the Oscars? Why isn't our benchmark that what we think is damn good.”

Citing the example of the 1977 film "Amar Akbar Anthony", he said: "There are fantastic movies ... can you imagine a film that entertained us phenomenally, which is like say 'Amar Akbar Anthony'. I mean why shouldn't it reach the Oscars?

"I would rather not have one Oscar, and instead have five 'Amar Akbar Anthony' movies."

Balki, who has also been part of the ad world, says he's often asked where India stands according to world standards.

His answer is: "We are far away from the world standard. The world cannot understand us. The Oscars need to understand us, we don't have to try to make it to the Oscars."

Balki's next film is “Shamitabh” which is set to hit the screens Friday. It stars Amitabh Bachchan, Dhanush and debutante Akshara Haasan in lead roles.

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