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The concept of love has been changing dynamically: Imtiaz Ali

"I’m sure there is something enchanting about being in a state like that. It is also a very creative state and I find myself returning to it very often while making a film," the filmmaker says on exploring the idea of love in his films

Written by Shweta Sharma | New Delhi |
March 26, 2021 1:20:51 pm
Imtiaz Ali, director Imtiaz Ali, Imtiaz Ali films, Imtiaz Ali instagram, Imtiaz Ali highway, Imtiaz Ali jab we met, Imtiaz Ali interview, Imtiaz Ali lockdown, Imtiaz Ali daughter, Imtiaz Ali alia bhatt, Imtiaz Ali twitter, Imtiaz Ali newsI’m interested in many themes around the pandemic and the lockdown, says filmmaker Imtiaz Ali. (Photos: Imtiaz Ali/Instagram; design: Gargi Singh)

Director Imtiaz Ali defines filmmaking as a “product of passion” because “if there is a passionate interest in trying to tell the story, then nothing is challenging”. Known for films like Tamasha, Rockstar, Highway and Jab We Met, he shares that he spent most of his time writing during the lockdown. But he also took up a few social media challenges that he shared with his fans and followers. In an email interaction with indianexpress.com, the filmmaker talks about his pandemic experience, his idea of love, and his expectations from the year. Read on.

You have often explored the idea of love in your films. What makes you keep coming back to the theme and present it in myriad ways?

I’m sure there is something enchanting about being in a state like that. It is also a very creative state and I find myself returning to it very often while making a film. The concept of love has been changing dynamically and today’s generation understands emotions in a very different manner, from how it was during the old days. So, the idea of showing romance or love in my movies is because I like it, but I am also open to exploring other subjects.

How challenging is it to bring your thoughts to life and translate them for the big screen, especially when you are dealing with intimate emotions?

Filmmaking is a product of passion, if there is a passionate interest in trying to tell the story, then nothing is challenging. The only challenge is to say it truthfully and to say it in a way that is collaborative.

Can we expect a film from you that would explore love in the time of/post-pandemic?

I’m interested in many themes around the pandemic and the lockdown. Hopefully, I’ll think of stories based on that. I will be looking forward to this year with a positive mindset and hope to bring to light new projects in the future.

The entertainment industry has been affected by the pandemic in a huge way, with many shoots happening virtually during the lockdown. What is your take on this new style of shooting?

This pandemic has affected a lot of industries around the world, including entertainment. For us, shooting was our daily life, and not being able to do it has affected us in different ways. We were to witness numerous movies in theatres last year, but due to the global situation, everything had to be planned differently. While we saw a lot of limitations due to the pandemic, it also gave the industry a lot of opportunities as OTT came into the bigger picture. OTT platforms gave the content creators an opportunity to showcase their stories in a different manner and storytellers started to pursue creative ways to produce content. This led me to the campaign with OPPO to create a short and meaningful story to motivate consumers to bring out their inner videographer with OPPO Reno5 Pro 5G.

How was the lockdown experience for you; what has been your biggest learning?

My biggest learning has been about the power of nature — the sun and the moon have affected me more than ever before. My time was mostly spent writing in the lockdown and I enjoyed it. I was lucky enough to get an opportunity to work on the campaign as it helped me to spend some time doing what I love the most – shoot! I did come across many challenges while shooting, but the support of my team helped me cruise through it without any difficulty. I feel people have started valuing themselves more, giving more attention to their health, and respecting what they have which is a very good change to witness. I have taken this time to focus on my writing and have been able to think more and explore more stories that can be worked on in the future.

And your expectations from 2021, both on the personal and professional front?

I hope to dive deeper and fly higher as far as my future endeavours are concerned. I want to tell more enchanting stories, which matter more to the audience that listens to them. As far as the Mumbai film industry is concerned, I hope that it becomes a place where we make much more original and innovative films that are as memorable as Indian mythology has been.

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