'Don’t want to be limited by geographical boundaries'

Don’t want to be limited by geographical boundaries: Apurva Kasaravalli

The director has started work on his first Bollywood film, which is set against the backdrop of Sino-Indian War of 1962

After ‘Niruttara’, director Apurva Kasaravalli and his wife Vandana are ready to embark on their new project, ‘Winter Bridge,’ which will also be Apurva’s debut in Bollywood.

The film is inspired by a poem by the Australian poet Robert Kenny, which talks about grief, sadness and finding courage amidst this gloom. Set in the backdrop of in Sino-Indian War of 1962, the film will be shot in Benares, India’s border with China and Himachal Pradesh.

In a chat with Showtime, Apurva, talks about his new venture, making inroads into Bollywood and more.

What inspired your next film?

The inspiration for anything creative is usually seeded by a lot of things.
I was reading ‘Eschaton’ or Kali Yuga in Hinduism and in Christianity: I closely followed writings on the end of time, following Armageddon when God will decree the fate of all humans, according to the good and evil of their earthly lives. This is when I came upon an article on war and the collateral damage it caused and how a war directly or indirectly changes many lives. This became the basis for the research for the film.

Since the Sino-Indian War is the backdrop, what kind of research has gone into scripting the project?

China is known for its bullying tactics. They had the same attitude in 1962 and remains the same even to this day. For research purposes, we have been speaking to a lot of ex-servicemen who served before, during and after the war of 1962. And all the materials and information provided by them has helped at the scripting stage, forming scenarios and events.

How did you zero in on actor Aryann?

Aryann and I have been talking about doing a film together for a while but nothing exciting came around. One day he called me with a plot idea. We met and discussed. After which I spent some time developing it till it reached the stage it is today. And all along, it was written with Aryann in mind. He is crazy about cinema and so am I. I think we complement each other’s energy, enthusiasm and dedication pretty well.

What kind of design and production challenges is Vandana facing?

Vandana is in charge of designing the project. From getting the costumes to setting up the mise en scene (props), everything has to resemble a period film. Creating authentic scenarios and backdrops are always a challenge. Here, we intend to show not just the war and small towns, but also the functioning of the postal department at that time because the main character is a postman.

What took you so long to make your Bollywood debut?

Language is just a medium to convey the story. My preoccupation has always been the story I tell and not the language I tell it in. Bollywood is not new to me. I have worked there before, but I always wanted my first film to be in my language, Kannada. I would like to focus on stories rather than the language. I don’t want to be limited by geographical boundaries.

(The first look of the film was unveiled on August 28).

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