Hope My Learnings from Anurag Kashyap, Sudhir Mishra Reflect in My Work

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Hope My Learnings from Anurag Kashyap, Sudhir Mishra Reflect in My Work

Director and writer Jaydeep Sarkar is receiving praise for his short film Ishq Mastana in Netflix anthology series Feels Like Ishq. The Khoya Khoya Chand writer, who has a knack for telling stories about mundanity of life with a touch of humour, says filmmakers Anurag Kashyap and Sudhir Mishra had great influence on his work. Incidentally, Jaydeep started off his career assisting them.

“I worked with Anurag on Gulaal and with Sudhir, I started off with Chameli then I worked Khoya Khoya Chand and Daas Dev. He was my teacher in the industry. The reason I choose to work with him is the kind of stories or themes he touches upon, are the kind of things that resonate with me. That’s why I worked with him, and I have learnt so much from them. And I hope that what I have learnt there somewhere resonates and reflects in my work”.

The filmmaker’s recent Netflix release has put him under the spotlight again as the theme resonated well with the youth. Set against the backdrop of a protest, the short film of 20 minutes duration see two youngsters develop a bond amid the chaos and risky environment. However, he says, he has come across comments criticising his story for depicting protests ‘lightly’. Sarkar explains why he choose this particular theme for his portion in the movie.

“I like love stories that happen in chaos. For me, Dil Se is one of the most beautiful love stories where people fall in love against the backdrop of a larger cause. We understand love only as love between two people, but love for a country, love for a cause can also be romantic. If I had to make a story on protest, why would I only talk about the politics of it? My film is not about the protest, it is a love story set in protest. In protests, there is a sense of threat and passion and you are at your most vulnerable. And that is an absolutely potent moment to fall in love.”

Addressing the criticism, Sarkar further explains, “I read some posts on Twitter where people wrote that I treating protests lightly. Protests are many things together. Romance and politics are not separate, and our ports have talked about it, our writers and even literature talk about it. So, the idea of bracketing things needs to stop and we need to evolve from that.

“I saw a Twitter thread where people were saying that Bollywood has used protest to tell a love story. No one has ‘used’ protests to say anything. I am bringing it into the mainstream. If anything, years later when people watch this film and want to know what was life like in 2020, I strongly feel it will them what it meant to be young in 2020.

“In Ishq Mastana, when the characters are getting arrested, I have used humorous music behind it, and people have also asked me about that. So, you can see the grim visuals on screen but the music for me brings the humour, which is of the ridiculousness of the situation where students are protesting peacefully and not harming anybody, and this has really happened, are thrown out of the city. This situation is ridiculous and that is what the scene tried to bring out,” concludes the Nayantara’s Necklace director.

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