Updated: July 6, 2022 6:27:10 pm
Filmmaker Nagesh Kukunoor was part of Modern Love: Hyderabad since its inception. Kukunoor read about 200 personal essays published in the New York Times to shortlist 20 stories. Of which six stories were finalised to form an anthology series.
The main criterion for Kukunoor was to handpick stories that would resonate with the Telugu audience. “A lot of attention was paid to selecting the right stories. We also made sure that we covered different aspects. We kept the audience in mind during the entire process,” the filmmaker told indianexpress.com.
Nagesh Kukunoor has directed three of six shorts in Modern Love: Hyderabad: My Unlikely Pandemic Dream Partner, Why Did She Leave Me There…? and Fuzzy, Purple And Full of Thorns. And not all of them deal with the conventional problems between romantic partners. While My Unlikely Pandemic Dream Partner explores the troubled relationship between a daughter and mother, Why Did She Leave Me There…? revolves around a grandson’s unanswered questions about being abandoned by his doting grandmother. And Fuzzy, Purple And Full of Thorns deals with conflict between romantic partners.
While several movies and shows have dealt with conflicts in a relationship, Kukunoor’s focus was on the value addition he can bring to the stories in Modern Love: Hyderabad to make them unique. “Not that these stories of love have not been explored. Almost everything has been done already. That’s the truth. But as a writer and director, I constantly ask myself what are the slight differences I can bring to the table? You do the best that you can. A lot of credit goes to these articles as well. It gives you the groundwork and an emotional crux, from which you can build,” the filmmaker said.
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Nagesh Kukunoor also revealed that working on Modern Love: Hyderabad was a memorable experience as he got to perceive Hyderabad, his home town, in ways that he hadn’t before. He said, “It was nice to go back to Hyderabad almost after a decade and see aspects of the city that you normally don’t. When you start planning a shoot, you do an elaborate recce. That was an extremely enjoyable process.”
Lastly, Kukunoor said he is confident that the audience will respond positively to storytelling attempts like the Modern Love series at a time when larger-than-life movies have become the flavour of the season.
“I always believe there is an audience for everything. That’s how I have managed to survive for 25 years. I keep doing my own thing. Not every film needs to bring in numbers like RRR. There are big films, mid-level films and small ones. I don’t worry about these things. I know people look at the trend and worry about this is working and this is not working. I think that new people out there need to find trends and things. For me, it’s mostly about storytelling. I tend to spend a lot of time on a movie, so I need to make sure that I believe in it. I pick my stories carefully and once I do, then the belief is total. The consequence of what will happen after that is really not in my control. So I don’t worry about it,” Nagesh Kukunoor concluded.
Modern Love: Hyderabad will premiere on Amazon Prime Video on July 8.
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