Actor-producer Abhay Deol has acquired three critically-acclaimed indie films, including Kaagaz Ki Kashti, which is a documentary on the late ghazal singer Jagjit Singh.Brahmanand Singh’s Kaagaz Ki Kashti is part of the Viewing Room of this year’s NFDC Film Bazaar here, which will conclude on November 24. Abhay has also acquired Aditya Vikram Sengupta’s Labour of Love, which was submitted for Viewing Room in 2014 and was also part of the ‘Film Bazaar Recommends’ section. Payal Sethi’s “Leeches”, a short film that was part of 2015’s Viewing Room, is the third title selected by the actor.
Abhay, who has personally curated the selection and is a regular attendee at the Film Bazaar, said in a statement: “The Film Bazaar has been happening now for 10 years. I have attended it at least a good three-to-four times, and I have seen a lot of growth each time. It’s great that they entertain projects in all stages of development, whether it’s in pre-production or in post-production.”
Speaking on the acquisitions, he said: “I saw ‘Labour of Love’ at Indian Film Festival of Los Angeles and was blown away with Aditya’s aesthetic sensibilities, and his ability to spin a story without any spoken dialogues. “Payal’s ‘Leeches’ is an important film that people need to watch. She has beautifully woven a compelling story around an issue that is anathema to our social fiber and well-being.”
Abhay, who will continue to curate films he loves and present them to audiences by collaborating with digital platforms, said his most recent selection is “Kaagaz Ki Kashti”.
“Brahmanand succeeds in powerfully bringing the legend (Jagjit Singh) back to life. I strongly believe in these films and want to ensure that audiences across the world watch them.”
The directors are happy too. Speaking about Abhay’s initiative, Aditya Vikram Sengupta said: Abhay has been a champion for the film right from the beginning, and will help in introducing the film to an even wider audience. I’m also happy about the fact that he is taking the initiative to further the movement of Indian independent cinema.”
Joining him, Payal Sethi added: “This is the start of a new movement for Indian indies, which need to look towards innovation, not just in filmmaking, but distribution as well. This initiative gives our films a digital lease on life and empowers us to build audiences beyond a successful festival run.” Brahmanand Singh believes that a film is a film, and the key is to keep you hooked to the narrative, and legends like ghazal singer Jagjit Singh need to be remembered and perpetuated for posterity.