Millennium Post

Lavish set, exotic locale don't ensure film's success: Srijit

Kolkata: Director Srijit Mukherji on Tuesday said the time of spending money on shooting at exotic locales and building lavish sets is passe, as the audience is not backing films having little content and more glitter.

Mukherji was addressing a discussion, 'Bid Budget Blockbuster Vs Small Budget films - which one can be superhit", at the Kolkata International Film Festival (KIFF).

Mukherji, whose 'Ek je Chhilo Raja' recently got the National Award as Best Bengali film, his latest film 'Gumnaami' was a success at the box office though it was made with a much less budget compared to several other films.

He, however, said, if the content demands there has to be big expenses for adventure films like 'Chander Pahar' or 'Amazon Obhiyan' by Kamaleswar Mukhopadhyay or science fiction like 'Professor Shonku' by Sandip Ray to recreate the effect as the director cannot fool the audiences with half-hearted works.

"So, what I mean is content is the factor, and building lavish sets for any film will not click," he said.

Popular Bengali actress Paoli Dam said the audience do not flock to the theatre or log in to Netflix after knowing the budget of a film, but after getting to know its content.

"I think the time is over when the audiences will rush to a theatre to see how the film is mounted, but they will rather bank on the story, the narration weaved by the script writer and the director," Dam said.

Director Arindam Sil said spending Rs 2 crore on a film and paying the hero Rs 50 lakh will not and cannot ensure success of a movie.

"Many high budget films, including those starring superstars, have bombed at the box office while those made with lower budgets went on winning the heart of the audiences running for weeks," Sil, who had made a string of hit Byomkesh Bakshi films in Bengali in past years, said.

Director and chairman of KIFF Organising committee Raj Chakraborty said the success of his recent film 'Parineeta' has proved that it was always not needed to spend crores of money to direct a film.

Chakraborty cited the example of his 'Joddha', which had flopped despite having built huge sets while how his first film 'Chirodini Tumi Je Amar' had made a business of Rs 2 crore despite having invested Rs 60 lakh.

"How to reach the audience and how to narrate the story is most important," he said.

To an assertion by actor Chiranjeet that there remains a city-village division among the audience in Bengali films, the other three film makers said such a division is getting blurred as city and towns have now invaded villages and the audiences everywhere can access films on the Net.

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