The Rising Stars of Bollywood
In an age such as this, when entertainment in cinema has become synonymous with nothing but a potpourri of masala flicks, there still is a motley group of Bollywood-ers who have preserved the ground for the real ethos of art. There is a significant rise in the percentage of movie lovers who have started to appreciate auteur-driven cinema than getting carried away by the glitterati; or be swayed by the stars who impart more gloss to the silver screen than show the real ‘stuff’, i.e., act.
Gone are the days when people were amazed by star value of actors alone. Earlier, the practice was to book the reigning superstar of the time, and half the work was done. This is still true in many cases, especially when we see the 100-crore blockbusters which are spearheaded by giant heroes – like Aamir Salman or Shahrukh. But increasingly, there is also a growing understanding of world cinema among a substantial segment, and not everybody is ready to take everything served to them without a question. Many have undoubtedly become mature enough to understand the nuances of films.
To cater to this new-fangled demand, there has emerged a new breed of filmmakers who have, with their outings, impressed not just the domestic janta, but international lovers of Indian cinema as well. It wouldn’t be wrong to state that these new age filmmakers seem to be gradually turning into the real superstars of Bollywood.
Here are the eminent ones, who in the near future look strong enough to break this trend of mindless cinema, winning accolades just because they have ‘the superstar’ by their side. The following auteur group looks set to bust the prevailing myth of a film being called a bumper blockbuster, the moment the film’s collection touches a 100 crore.
Anurag Kashyap – The Dark Knight of Bollywood
The real game changer, Anurag Kashyap, brought about a radical change in Bollywood with his own brand of cinema. He is known as the director who merged the parallel form with ‘populist’ films. His movies like ‘Black Friday’, ‘Dev D’, ‘Gulaal’ and ‘Gangs of Wasseypur’ were experimental, avant-garde and commercial at the same time. In most of his films, the emphasis is more on the content than the cast. Another very important aspect of most of Kashyap’s films is that the story does not revolve around the ‘star’ in his film, but the issue at hand, which is often subtle and layered. The director has this uncanny ability to intricately weave different characters around the core subject of the film.
Dibaker Banerjee – The man with a vision
Dibakar Banerjee wowed all with his debut film ‘Khosla Ka Ghosla’. When the film released and got a thumbs-up from the audience, trade pundits went into a tizzy over Banerjee’s incredible talent for making such a strong and conceptually brilliant film on a miniscule budget. Known for thinking out of the box by adopting unconventional ways to shoot his films, Dibakar has managed to strike a chord with the audience. There is a certain way in which Dibakar envisions characters in his films, a quality that is very unique to him. There is a certain subtext to every performance and role. He goes into the complexities of what each character is thinking — where it’s coming from, where it’s going. He is a maverick when it comes to shooting his films.
Sujoy Ghosh – The new Kahaani-weaver
Another brilliant director, Sujoy Ghosh, has been in the industry for a while, but his real talent came to the fore only after the release of the thriller ‘Kahaani’. Even though actress Vidya Balan was lauded by all for her superb performance, it was the direction of Sujoy Ghosh who infused that much needed ‘punch’ into the film. Ghosh’s talent was first tapped by expert film producer Pritish Nandy, who gave him a break with ‘Jhankar Beats’. The film wasn’t a BO wonder, but it did manage to win critical acclaim with many appreciating the first time director for his new approach film making. Sujoy Ghosh is like a magician who has this wonderful ability to weave stories beyond anyone’s imagination.
Zoya Akhtar – Lady with the golden touch
Anything she touches turns into gold. She is another contemporary Indian film director who made her debut with the critically acclaimed ‘Luck By Chance’, and then went on to build a reputation for herself as one of the most intelligent directors in town with her sensible as well as commercially successful ‘Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara’. ZNMD did have superstars like Hrithik, Farhan and Abhay, but they never superseded the core idea behind the film – living life like there is no tomorrow. It was the nonconformist Zoya who harnessed the quality of the stars of Bollywood and presented a wonderful picture.
Bejoy Nambiar – The affable Shaitan of B’wood
Bejoy Nambiar, uber-suave, is a man of many cinematic talents. He`s earned widespread popularity for his critically acclaimed short films, ‘Rahu’ and ‘Reflections’. He shattered Bollywood formula films with his debut, `Shaitan`. As a director of unparalleled talent, he has received immense appreciation from the audience.
Vikramaditya Motwane – The Unconventional
Next is the talented ‘Dev D’ scriptwriter, Vikramaditya Motwane, who made a stellar directorial debut with the film, ‘Udaan’ in 2010. Vikramaditya earned himself international acclaim with ‘Udaan’, which was selected to compete in the 2010 Cannes Film Festival. He also won the 2011 Screen Award for the Best Director. He is definitely one director to look forward to in the near future.
These filmmakers have tried to infuse freshness into Bollywood, without departing from mainstream norms. Amidst their dissimilarities, what unites these directors is their international acceptability. The fact that their films, despite being highly individualistic and driven by distinctive directorial visions, are being lapped up by the audience, marks the new generation’s dissatisfaction with Bollywood and its industrialised mode of film production. These people are definitely well-versed with contemporary international cinema and are keen on reaching out to audiences in India and all over the world.