'I would have loved to shoot in Pakistan'

'I would have loved to shoot in Pakistan'

Lack of resources and complications related to filming in Pakistan kept first-time director Nitin Kakkar away from shooting his National Award winning saga Filmistaan, whose story is about binding India and Pakistan using Bollywood, in the neighbouring country.

The movie, which released in India June 6, has been lauded critically and commercially. But Kakkar still wishes he had got a chance to shoot the movie in Pakistan too.

There was always an effort to collaborate with Pakistan in some way on the film.

“We shot the whole film in 20 days. We didn't have anybody from Pakistan while shooting the film but (Pakistani singer) Shafqat Amanat Ali Khan has sung for the film. We are glad we worked with him because in some way we wanted to collaborate with Pakistan,” Kakkar told IANS.

Khan crooned Bhugol and Bol for the Sharib Hashmi and Inaamulhaq-starrer, but had matters been in Kakkar's hands, he would've taken his crew and shot the movie across the border.

“We would love to visit Pakistan; but that's the reason for making the film. It's very difficult to visit Pakistan. I would have loved to shoot the film in Pakistan, but you know how times are. It’s not easy for a small film like ours. We couldn't afford to get stuck even for two days. We did our shooting in Bikaner (Rajasthan) and researched in Mumbai,” said Kakkar.

The going wasn't easy for the crew at all. It took the filmmaker about 10 months to make the movie and by 2012 it was ready to hit the screens, but he had no funds to
release it.

Presented by Shringar Film Pvt. Ltd. and UTV Spotboy, the movie won the best feature film in Hindi at the 60th National Film Awards 2012, the Silver Crow Pheasant Award for best debut film at the International Film Festival of Kerala and a special jury mention at the 2012 Busan International Film Festival.

The comedy-drama managed to mint over Rs 3 crore in the four days since its release, but didn’t reach audiences in Pakistan.

The director hopes to make it happen some day.

Kakkar, who will now helm Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra's next production, graduated from television to films. He believes that television has been his “training ground”, but he enjoys filmmaking more. He’s game to do TV again.

“I would love to do TV. I feel the kind of content on TV can improve and can give the audience a lot more. The way we present human community is not how it is. TV is living
in the 1980s and we have moved ahead.

“I would love to see content which is strongly story driven and there should be a start and end to it,” said Kakkar, who had directed a few episodes of horror show Sssshh... Phir Koi Hai.