Sports biopics have become a trend in the Hindi film industry. From MS Dhoni to Dangal, Bollywood has successfully churned out one sports film after the other. Hitting screen in January 2018 will be filmmaker Anurag Kashyap’s Mukkabaaz, which is the story of the struggles of a boxer. But Kashyap is certain that his work is not the result of a formula that Bollywood seems to have cracked. In fact, the director calls it a “sad situation” of the country where there are more films on sports than victories.
At the trailer launch of Mukkabaaz, which Anurag Kashyap has also co-produced with Aanand L Rai, the director said the film explores the problems in the system that dissuades aspiring sportspersons from following their dreams.
“We have more sports movies than medals. The film comes from that sad situation. In population, we come after China but in medal tally, we always lag behind. Why is it happening? Why can’t we produce sportsmen?” said Kashyap.
“There is a problem in our sports system. Through this film and through a love story, we are trying to explore that. It’s a very pro-sports film. I call it the most pro-sports film,” added the director.
But it is not just the administration, but also people, in general, who should be blamed for disrespecting the sportspersons, who bring pride to the country.
“We get a little something and burst into celebrations. We go crazy. A small medal is celebrated so much that the person who won that doesn’t even qualify the next time. The film comes from that irony.
“We worked under the radar for the film for a long time. The film looks at how in sports we have to deal with things which are not connected to it. It’s only in our country that the sportsmen travel in economy class and the people taking them fly business class. The irony exists only in our country and then we expect medals,” said Anurag Kashyap.
When asked if the essence of sports films often gets overshadowed by patriotism, the director said that nationalism has actually become a formula now for Bollywood and the country.
“Patriotism has become a formula now. That formula has now come into films and in real life too. So, this film comments on that too but never gets overshadowed by it.”
Mukkabaaz, starring Ravi Kishan, Vineet Singh and debutante Zoya Hussain, will arrive in theaters on January 12.