Wednesday, December 13, 2017
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On a single trackDirector Pankaj Batra (third from left) with the cast of Rangroot

On a single track

War films or period dramas...are makers of Punjabi films treading the same path when it comes to choosing subjects? We find out...13 Dec 2017 | 12:30 AM

For quite some time now, Punjabi cinema has been crying about dearth of good subjects.

[ + read story ]

Jasmine Singh

For quite some time now, Punjabi cinema has been crying about dearth of good subjects. Today, the audience is bamboozled about similar subjects that the directors are picking for their creative projects. So is there a dearth of subjects? Or do they think similar topics will work with the audience? In the coming year, we will see films on war, hockey and battles, but, of course, as the makers say, their film will be 100 per cent different from others! 

War zone

Diljit Dosanjh-starrer Rangroot, directed by Pankaj Batra, and Gippy Grewal-starrer Subedar Joginder Singh, directed by Simerjit Singh, are movies based on war — one is based on World War I, while the other is a biopic with the World War as the backgrorund. “Ours is a biopic; how many people in Punjab or otherwise know about the sacrifices of Subedar Joginder Singh? Not many. And this movie will make the audiences know about the valour of this great soldier who fought three wars,” beams Simerjit.  

How about Rangroot — first Punjabi movie on World War I? Simarjit is of the opinion that any other movie on war wouldn’t affect their film because theirs is a different subject altogether. “I don’t think this will have any negative effect on the audiences or the films.”

Battle it out

Director Pankaj Batra, on the other hand, doesn’t want to sound too forceful. “After films like Angrej and Bambukat did well on the box-office, every other person started making films like those. Punjabis are into herd mentality,” says the director. Ki keh sakde han fer,” he laughs. 

Battle of Saragarhi is also another subject that has made to the discussion table of many filmmakers. Director Rohit Jugraj, of Sardaar ji fame, is making one movie on the subject while RajKumar Santoshi and Punjabi director Anurag Singh are also making a film on it. 

High flick

Moving on from wars and battles, now directors are dribbling with hockey. Punjabi film Khido Khundi is all about hockey and Diljit Dosanjh-starrer Soorma is also about the same sport. “Why should there be any problem with it. If Shah Rukh Khan and Aamir Khan chose to make movies on a similar topic, the treatment will surely be different,” shares actor Manav Vij, who stars in Khido Khundi along with Punjabi singer-actor Ranjit Bawa. “A film is eventually a creative journey, so even similar subjects will have different journeys.” Having said this, Manav does not deny that movies on same subjects can bore the audience, “In the end, it is about the director’s vision, and I am sure two different directors will see the same thing differently.”

So, is the audience ready for an extra dose on similar subjects? 

jasmine@tribunemail.com

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