NIFT graduates produce dark comedy in 48 hours

Four youngsters have brought laurels to the country with their documentary 2 shots, 2 late

NIFT graduates produce dark  comedy in 48 hours

They all have studied in National Institute of Fashion Technology (NIFT). They all are in their 20s. And they all are from Patna.Today, all the four young lads – Kabeer, Sumit, Suyash and Aniket-- are walking tall after their documentary “2 shots, 2 late” bagged a prestigious award at Filmapalooza - an event under the 48 Hour Film Project, the world’s biggest amateur film-making competition organised in Los Angeles earlier this month.

A seven-minute documentary, produ­ced by Sumit Saurabh and directed by Kabeer, was ranked 23rd in the best film category among the 145 short films from 83 countries screened at the contest. Of the other two friends - Suyash Raj is the lead actor while Aniket is the assistant director of the film.

When asked to dwell at length about what is this 48 Hour Film Project, Sumit Saurabh, the 27-year-old producer, told Deccan Herald, “The 48 Hour Film Project is the world's biggest amateur film-making competition. There are 145 cities from 83 countries competing with one another for the International Grand Prize at Hollywood, US. The top 10 international films can screen their films at the Cannes Film Festival in Paris in the short film section. The competition started in the US in 2001.”

“2 Shots, 2 late” has already won the best film from India award beating a film each from Mumbai and Hyderabad. “Ours was the only film from Asia to be ranked in the top 25. The response of the audience was stupendous when the film was screened at the TCL Chinese Theatre at the historic Hollywood Walk of Fame on 6925, Hollywood Boulevard, Hollywood, California,” said 24-year-old Kabeer, who is, at present, the creative head at an interactive media design and consultancy firm in New Delhi.

“The short film is basically a dark

comedy about a couple’s fight gone wrong. Our movie was selected as the best film from India by a jury comprising Nagesh Kukunoor (the acclaimed director of off-beat movies like Iqbal and Rockford) and Rajat Kapoor (actor-writer-director). I play the role of a real estate agent in the film,” said 28-year-old Suyash, the lead actor. But how can one participate in the 48 Hour Film Project and how can one make it to Hollywood while representing India? “The participating teams are asked to write, shoot, edit and submit a short film of 10 minutes in just 48 hours. Hence it’s called 48-Hour Film Project.

To ensure that all the creative writing and shooting is done in the given 48 hours, the teams are given a specific genre, a prop, a character name and a line of dialogue which they have to use in the majority of the film. For example, the genre assigned to us was “bar comedian” and the line to be incorporated in the movie was “let’s not do it today.” There were five participating cities from India -- Delhi, Mumbai, Hyderabad, Chennai and Kolkata. Once you win the Best Film Award from your city, a jury panel selects the top three films to represent the country,” explained Suyash.

The lead actor is a 2009 batch NIFT product and is presently employed as Branch Manager in Pidilite Industries Ltd handling Fevicol Brand in New Delhi. “I did my schooling from St. Michael’s, Patna. Right from my student days, acting was my passion. Even in Delhi, I pursued acting whenever I got time,” averred Suyash.

His friend Saurabh, the producer of the film, is his batchmate from NIFT, New Delhi. Working in New Delhi as a photographer, teacher and career counsellor, Saurabh runs his own production house and training institute for design students in New Delhi. Originally hailing from Patna, he did his schooling from St Xavier’s.

These two friends met Kabeer who recently passed out from NIFT. Kabeer helps companies in creating marketing strategies, branding plan, creative development and execution etc. He has directed various corporate films, documentaries and short films for Red Bull India, Cushman & Wakefield and also for various fashion shows in Delhi.

The 23-year-old Kabeer, who is the director and editor of the film, had actually teamed up with Saurabh earlier when the duo organised a critically acclaimed show “Cycle Ki Sawaari” in Patna and Delhi in 2013. Kabeer has also written the screenplay for the documentary. Assisting Kabeer was Aniket Krishna, 23, who too is incidentally a recent pass out from NIFT, New Delhi. Working as a photographer, graphics artist and an art director in New Delhi, he, too, completed his schooling from Patna.The team of four young lads was handed over a trophy and gift vouchers for their accomplishment.

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