By Soumya Venugopal:
When the original maverick of Hindi film industry gets outmaneuvered by a newcomer, then one knows that change is here to stay. After a spate of big-budget archetypical Bollywood potboilers, it is heartening to see that the faith in low-budget tales told from the heart is very much intact. The phenomenon that made small-budget film “Aamir” a success, though it was released alongside “Sarkar Raj” that had Amitabh Bachchan his son Abhishek and daughter-in-law Aishwarya Rai, was not a flash in the pan but is here to stay. We as an audience obviously have no grudges against the typical masala stuff, infact all of us enjoy such kind of movies. But for true cinema lovers what will be ideal is the peaceful co-existence of all kinds of cinema. The industry needs big-budgeted movies like Om Shaanti Om and Devdas to fund small movies like Aamir, Mumbai Meri Jaan and Bheja Fry. The sheer diversity in movie releases these days goes to show how far Hindi cinema has come from the days when films strictly followed formulas and points to where the industry is headed.
Gone are the days when cinema was passed on as legacy. Today this industry has grown to such an extent that anyone…anyone…me, you and yes you too.. all of us can write a refreshing story, and make a movie. All of us have some story to tell, then why not tell it to the whole world? The sudden emergence of young breed of actors, directors and musicians finally confirms that the industry and the box-office has finally let go of the old prejudices and welcoming new ideas with open arms. With so-called multiplex movies like “Mithya”, “Jab We Met”, “Khosla Ka Ghosla”, “Bheja Fry” and “Jaane Tu… Ya Jaane Na” – doing well, the day when independent expression and mainstream masala films begin to co-exist at the turnstiles are not far. The Hindi filmdom will no longer call filmmakers who harbour this dream, maverick or the unbecoming fool. The audience has grown up. With more than eight channels beaming the best of cinema — local and global — right into your living room, movie consumption has tripled, so exposure is tremendous.
The young actors and directors today are so efficient that even the biggies like Amitabh Bachchan and Shah Rukh Khan are willing to experiment and try out something new along with them. With their fresh and out-of-the-box approach they are bound to make Indian movies and actors equal to that of Hollywood biggies. What makes these young people and their movies so different? The fact that these people do not fear experimenting and are willing to take the untrodden path. Another advantage these young guns have is that they are no strangers to the Hollywood or world cinema trends. Infact they have been exposed to the best of both the worlds.
These film-makers have been trained just like their Hollywood counterparts and hence employ same kind of writing and techniques as used in Hollywood flicks. These people have easily overcome another roadblock, that being the language. Today with most of the flicks using Hinglish in plenty this gap between the Hollywood and Bollywood is being bridged.
Here are some of the promising young film makers….
1) Abhishek Chaubey
Ladies and Gentleman…Put your hands together for Abhishek Chaubey. This is the man who gave us a fascinating tale about love and lust, greed and deceit and down right cunningness boiled in passion that is embedded in true life characters that you can see on a day to day basis or even in some mirrors. This man gave the girl-next-door Vidya Balan a complete make over, in terms of looks and character. It was the realistic handling and perfect presentation that made the film absolutely engrossing and kept the audiences glued to the seats till the final titles roll-over and lights came on. From the Vishal Bharadwaj’s School of Film making this young director,writer has penned the dialogues for movies like Omkara (also won a Filmfare award for the same), Kaminey and Ishqiya.
2) Ayan Mukerji
Good looks with oodles of talent – That’s Ayan Mukherji for you. The man…oops boy who gave us ‘Wake up Sid”, the story of a young confused boy and his journey. It had a constant flow throughout, no over the top or understated drama, no ultra emotional strangulation of audiences, absolutely no yuppie cool dude act, and last but not the least, this is an original and refreshing story. Ranbir Kapoor was anything but a hero in this movie and Konkana Sen was more than happy to play women five years older than Ranbir. Despite of the odd pairing there was this something that brewed between the two and it pretty much gave us a true picture of a platonic relationship. There was no ‘overnight transformation’ in this movie and that was a refreshing change for the audiences.
3) Sagar Ballary
The first name that comes to ones mind is Bheja Fry. This man managed to impress the audiences with his maiden directorial venture. It was a simple clean and unique story. It didn’t have any of those vulgar, double meaning jokes that are used as a stimulant in the comedies these days. It was film about an idiot intelligently made and very well received. This man introduced us to a new era of Bollywood which relied more on brain than brawn. With some pop-corn and some bheja fried this movie was a gourmet dish.
4) Amit Trivedi
This singer, lyricist and musician shot to fame in the Hindi film music scene for his critically acclaimed work in Aamir and more recent one Dev D. Deck the halls with boughs of holly and watch out for this talented man in the upcoming, most awaited movie Aisha. The feel of his music does its own talking and that’s the style of this young music director.
5) Prateek Babbar
Yet another promising star-kid with grrrreeeeeeat looks! He made his entry in Bollywood sans all the fanfare usually associated with a launch pad. Since it was a debut vehicle for Aamir Khan’s nephew, Imran Khan, and the film being an Aamir Khan Production, attention was bound to be focused on Imran. But that didn’t stop Prateek form signing on the dotted lines as he wanted to make it on his own, without the ‘star-kid’ tag attached. Streaks of the legendary Smita Patil are evident in this young actor.
There are many more upcoming young actors, film-makers and musicians who are coming into Bollywood in a big was and they are here to stay! Curtains up for them!