Hello Jamshid. Thank you so much for talking to BUZZ Magazine. Firstly, we’d like to know what made you become a filmmaker?
I think I have my mother to thank for that. As kids, my mum used to take all my building friends and me to the cinema whenever a new film released. It used to be a daylong fun trip as back then we would travel all the way to cinemas like Sterling and Regal from the suburbs. We looked forward to these outings and obviously the exclusivity of being able to watch films only on the big-screen since we didn’t have many options on the television back then. I guess because of the ethereal experience films always gave me, as I grew older, I started getting more curious to know what goes behind bringing that amazing experience which entertains the audience and helps transcend them into this different world, forgetting everything else. A filmmaker has, like this magic wand that can make the audience experience a range of emotions in a short time, apart from, of course inspiring and stimulating them. I wanted to be in possession of that magic wand. I kept itching to be part of this medium, which I believe is one of the most powerful mediums of communication. That itch made me quit my job as a media planner and jump into films, my raison d’etre.
What inspired you to write the story for Akuri…and a pinch of hope?
A while back, on a Radio station, I heard a listener share this beautiful, short encounter he had with a stranger on a train. I was absolutely touched by the man’s experience and had this smile on me the whole day. It got me thinking; we actually have no idea what experiences life can throw at us. Take people whom we meet in our daily lives as an example. Sometimes, it doesn’t make sense, the short periods of time some people come in our lives, or the outcomes from what they say or do. Some short, unplanned encounters may end up entirely altering your path in life. I thought of exploring what could happen if two people, completely unknown to each other and poles apart in their characteristics, met. This forms the crux/plot of Akuri…and a pinch of hope.
How different is shooting a short film from shooting a feature film?
Well, they are not much different from each other. Both have their own advantages. Shorts don’t really enjoy the kind of budgetary and logistical comforts of a feature film, although they give you a little more leeway in going experimental without worrying about the commercials.
You play three roles: story, screenplay and director – does that make your job easier or more difficult?
I believe, as a filmmaker, even if someone else has written the script, you tend to have a lot of inputs in the screenwriting, before the script is finalized. Directing and executing your own script is probably a little more streamlined and faster since you have visualized it yourself while writing.
Is there any particular short story/novel that you’d love to adapt into a film?
I recently finished reading this book, which is a collection of short, unconventional love stories of real people. A few of them have kicked me to adapt them into feature films.
Do you have a favorite short film that you would like to recommend to our readers?
Humara Movie makes some really good short film content and so does Terribly Tiny Talkies. It resonates with me the most.
What can we expect from you next?
I have just finished writing a full-length Hindi feature film script, my directorial debut and shall start pitching it to studios soon. I have also co-written a Hindi feature film, which is scheduled to go on floor in May.
Is there any actor/actress that you would love to work with some day?
The wish list is quite long, but if I have to narrow down, I personally connect with the work of Aamir Khan, Ranbir Kapoor, Nawazuddin Siddique, Irrfan in the male actors. The female wish list would include Anushka Sharma, Alia Bhatt, Nimrat Kaur and Tisca Chopra.
Do you have any message for our readers?
Life doesn’t always deal the right cards, guys. But, every negative we face, always has a positive hidden somewhere. It’s just how long we take to find that positive and find our happiness…our Akuri.
Good luck with Akuri! Thank you again for talking with us.
Thank you…it’s been a pleasure.