Throwing his weight behind director-friends Hansal and Sudhir’s movies, Bheed maker Anubhav says viewers must explore beyond big-scale entertainers
Filmmaker Anubhav Sinha has an open offer for his director-friends. They decide the story they want to tell, and he will throw his weight behind the project. This year, he has backed Hansal Mehta’s Faraaz. “The same offer is open to [Anurag] Kashyap, Ketan Mehta and a few other friends,” smiles Sinha, whose Bheed hit the screens last week. Up next are two productions — Sudhir Mishra’s drama Afwaah, and an anthology.
Sinha and Mishra were trying to collaborate on a film for the past 10 years. It was the Nawazuddin Siddiqui and Bhumi Pednekar-starrer that finally excited them. “It happened organically that I produced Hansal and Sudhir bhai’s films. Sudhir bhai and I talk four times a day, discussing new stories. Producing is creative, social and personal.”
Anurag Kashyap and Hansal Mehta
Sinha, who made his feature film directorial debut with Tum Bin (2001), has come a long way in the past two decades — directing hard-hitting films like Article 15 (2019) and Thappad (2020), while enabling his peers to tell their stories. “I don’t look at what I am doing as helping someone tell a story. That’s too condescending [to others]. I am in a position today where I [have] money [to support] a film that I think should be made. Tomorrow, someone else will be in this position, and he will hopefully say that about my film. It’s about sharing the individual’s belief in the film.”
Anubhav Sinha’s Bheed, starring Rao and Pednekar, released last week
Also Read: Anubhav Sinha: Bheed is a story that needs to be told with honesty and compassion
While he attaches his name to small but significant stories, the audience, of late, seems to show an inclination towards big-scale entertainers. Point it out to Sinha, and he doesn’t mince his words, as he states, “While one seeks approval from the audience, one also wants the audience to identify a good film and back it. One is disappointed when they don’t go and watch a film like Faraaz, which was about youngsters and got great reviews. They need to explore newer kinds of films. It has become a convenient discussion that some films are made for OTT, and some for theatre. Watching a film on OTT is like having coffee, and not smelling it. In theatres, you can [fully experience] a movie.”