Being mass media students, we keep making films for college fests. We heard about MAMI Film Festival and saw this as a big opportunity. We thought of participating in that as we had never made a film for a platform outside college.
What motivated us for this movie was the subject. As the criteria was ‘roots’ and ‘home’, we thought what could be better than the Mumbai locals as a subject. It is the spirit of the city and the people. We started researching a bit but were not convinced by the same old documentary style of filmmaking. Though the subject might appear too mainstream, our idea was to show locals in such a way that no had seen before. A lot had already been made on the local trains and we didn’t want to show the same thing again.
So we came up with the idea of giving voice to the local. What would a train think of the city, its own perspective about the people. What also amused us was the thought of the locals having a large family of trains spreading across the city. Another important aspect was that the local trains somehow symbolise the local people of Mumbai which was quite interesting. The fact that how we could incorporate the documentary style of filmmaking to this and create a new kind of genre ‘Docu-Fiction’ in which we had a certain amount of creative liberty.
We scripted the whole thing in 4-5 days, shot in 2 days and edited it overnight. The original music also was created overnight while the editing was in progress. The voice over was an integral part of the film and we wanted an authentic feel. We found Bhartiji’s voice, who works at my friend Kanishk’s place (who co-wrote and did the music) really interesting and asked her to do the VO.
The selection at MAMI was a huge thing for us. And the ‘Special Jury Mention Award’ was just overwhelming. We had no such plans to take this any further. And when Filmfare introduced the short film awards this year, we sent our film just for the sake of it. Now it has been selected in amongst the top 44 films in India. It feels really great.