By Renu Mehta
I go to India to get stories, says Director Shekhar Kapur on September 8, speaking at the launch event of the India pavilion at the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) on September 8.
“Everywhere you turn in India, there is a story. It’s provocative,” he says. “I may not make that film but I go back to India to reach out to see myself as a creative person. Every place I look there is art, every place I look there is agony, every place I look there is joy. I can stand in one place and I see a wedding party go by, I look around I see a film, I look the other way I see a temple, I look the other way, I see somebody is fighting and protesting against the temple. You will find all of life in India. There is a story everywhere you turn.”
Addressing the gathering that included Emcee and host Jake Dheer amidst a host of other well-known Torontonians and others, Kapoor is confident that India has a lot to offer in terms of film making, a country that offers pools of labour, locations, and the latest in technology.
He was joined by Indian Consul General Apoorva Srivastava, Vani Tripathi, Central Board of Film Certification board member as well as several other dignitaries at the event.
“Why do we only talk about the Hindi film industry that by an acronym is called Bollywood,” says Tripathi referring to India as the content hub of the world. “There is an Indian film industry with many Indian languages that have made such a global imprint – there’s Punjabi, there is Marathi, there is Tamil, there is Telegu and this year at TIFF there is so much linguistic diversity that you receive when you see Indian cinema.”
Meanwhile, Kapur, who has directed films like Bandit Queen, Masoom, Elizabeth and Four Feathers among others is in Toronto to showcase his film What’s Love Got to Do with it, that will have its Gala Premier at Roy Thomson Hall on Sunday, September 10 at 6:30 pm. The film stars Lily James, Shazad Latif, Emma Thompson and Shabana Azmi and the smart, effervescent romantic comedy follows a filmmaker who decides to document her best friend’s journey towards arranged marriage.