Adil Hussain in a conversation with Kriti Sanon at IFFI 2018 says, the current times are ‘Achhe Din’ for art-house cinema

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By K Ashwin Mobile: 09920183006 Email:indianshowbusiness@gmail.com

The weather was already hot enough in Goa the last few days, but Kriti Sanon’s presence at Kala Academy in the early afternoon hours of 24th November sent the temperatures soaring high as the actress showed up in a lovely red jumpsuit. The icing on the cake was Adil Hussain making a surprise appearance to join Kriti Sanon and the moderator Arjun Narula in an In-Conversation session titled, ‘Ms. Taken Identity – Getting To Know Kriti Sanon.’

It is important to note that Adil Hussain’s film, Abyakto, is being screening at IFFI this year in the Feature Film section of Indian Panorama.

The session started with the actors expressing their love for Delhi – a city that they share fond memories of. While Kriti hails from the national capital city, Adil Hussain feels emotionally connected with the city and credits it for sort of ‘giving him a rebirth’. Adil was referring to his development as an actor during his days at National School of Drama.

Before making a mark in the film and fashion industry, Kriti was born and raised in New Delhi where she pursued an engineering degree after which she moved to Mumbai. She made her acting debut with the Telugu psychological thriller 1: Nenokkadine (2014) and had her first Hindi film release in Sabbir Khan’s action film Heropanti opposite Tiger Shroff for which she won the Filmfare Award for Best Female Debut. Sanon went on to play the lead female role in two commercially successful films, the action-comedy Dilwale (2015), which ranks among the highest-grossing Indian films of all time, and the romantic comedy Bareilly Ki Barfi (2017).

The actress confessed that akin to some of the best events in her life, a career in acting was unplanned.

While Kriti started her acting career from the South, Adil has worked in English, Hindi, Assamese, Bengali, Tamil, Marathi, Malayalam, Norwegian and French films over the years. When asked how these myriad film industries differ with each other, Adil Hussain said, “In the West, there is precise planning involved and the sets are quieter, unlike the culture here in India.” The National Award winning actor has recently acted in Norwegian film, What Will People Say that has been nominated for Best Foreign Language Film at the 91st Academy Awards.

While elaborating further on the topic, the actor said that he has decided to not act in Tamil and Telegu films primarily because of the language barrier that prohibits the actor in him from going with the flow.

Both Adil and Kriti have worked with women directors in the past. When asked if the experience of working with women directors is different as opposed to their male counterparts, Kriti failed to point out any distinctions stating that it is not gender-based but an individualistic trait. Adil, on the other hand, felt that there is a certain grace on the set of a film when a woman director is in control. He further said, “I feel, a female director tends to look at a role with a tad more empathy and compassion than a man would.”

When asked by one of the audience members about how the parallel cinema or art-house cinema fares against the mainstream commercial cinema, Adil said that the current times look good for the former and it looks like things are going to improve. He said, “Film festivals and digital platforms have been showing great interest in films of this nature. The current times are ‘Achhe Din’ for Art-house cinema.”

The past year has been full of work for Kriti and the next year looks exciting for the actress as her films are going to be released. Kriti said, “I have Luka Chuppi, Arjun Patiala and Housefull 4 for release next year. I am also looking forward to working with Ashutosh Gowarikar on Panipat, which will be my first period film.”

Sriram Raghavan, best known for producing some of the grittiest thrillers in Hindi cinema was seen with brother Shridhar Raghavan in the audience.

Israeli filmmaker Dan Wolman’s Masterclass

The day also saw Israeli master craftsman Dan Wolman conduct a masterclass for cine lovers and budding filmmakers. The veteran film director who was presented with the Lifetime Achievement Award at IFFI this year, has produced a wide range of films with daring subjects concerning problems of older people, migrants, and more.

A rather chirpy Wolman addressed the audience in his signature candid fashion, sharing an in-depth knowledge of the different aspects of filmmaking. Using his short films which were shown on the big screen to the audience, Wolman touched upon ideas for making short films, documentary films and full length feature films. The ace filmmaker also shared ideas of getting film projects financed effectively.

While touching upon this topic, Wolman said, “I take about 8 to 12 months for screenwriting. I prepare two kinds of script – One, with my full imagination, and another which is something that I can do on my own with a smaller budget. That way I don’t have to be dependent on the faith of the producer in my film.”

While stressing on the point that it is important to keep working for a filmmaker, Wolman said, “I don’t mind making bad films. I don’t take it seriously. It is important to keep working. I am not trying to make a masterpiece. The joy of making films is in the making of the film. I envision the film as I write the script. When I make films, I try to make it in the best manner possible.”

Academy Awards winning VFX Master, Tim McGovern’s In-Conversation session

The 49th edition of IFFI witnessed the presence of Tim McGovern who is the first person to win an Academy Award in Visual Effects (VFX). The man behind the stunning VFX in films like Dunkirk, Mission: Impossible Rogue Nation, Total Recall, Tron, Supernova, Ant-Man and the Wasp, and many more addressed the audience in an In-Conversation session.

While speaking about his experience working with Christopher Nolan on Dunkirk, Tim said, “He (Christopher Nolan) loves distortions and imperfections. He loves his footage and analog films. He used to dislike use of VFX where he felt could be recreated manually. He is a real master of storytelling and photography.”

The debate between anolog and digital has been a long-standing one and filmmakers over the years have expressed their affinity towards the platform of their choice. When asked about his choice, Tim was quick to say, “I love digital. I find no reason to like imperfections. Digital is the only way to go. The resolution and the colour range is much better.”

The VFX craftsman then went on to describe in detail the work that went into working on Total Recall and his experience working with Arnold Schwarzenegger. He also gave snippets of working on films like Ant-Man and the Wasp and Dunkirk.

In the recent past, India has produced some great artistes who continue to work on some big-budget Hollywood films, as seen in the credits roll of these films. These artistes from across the world have made the world take note of India as a destination for VFX post-production. Tim said, “There is nothing in the world that should stop India from excelling in VFX”, while adding that the VFX work of significant portions of films like Dunkirk and Ant-Man and the Wasp, among many others, was done in Mumbai.

The 49th International Film Festival of India began on Tuesday, 20 November 2018 and ends on Wednesday, 28 November 2018, in Panaji, Goa.

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