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Naseeruddin Shah Opens Up About Films Like Gadar 2, Kashmir Files As He Promotes His Directorial Venture Man Woman Man Woman

One of India’s best actors, Naseeruddin Shah, has always been outspoken about his opinions. It’s troubling that films like Kashmir Files are so widely appreciated, remarked the actor in a recent interview to promote his directorial debut Man Woman Man Woman.

While speaking to the news agency, on being asked what took him 17 years to make a come-back as a director, Naseeruddin Shah said, “ I was recovering from the shock of having made such a bad film. It didn’t turn out the way I imagined it to be. I wasn’t technically equipped enough at that time – screenplay writing wise or film wise. I just thought if I assemble all the best actors, they will deliver. I thought it was a decent script. But later while editing it I realised there were some loopholes in the script, particularly in Irrfan Khan’s story. It was a big disappointment for me, except for the contribution of the actors. I take the responsibility of it all. I never thought I would make another film because it’s hard work. It involves handling a lot of egos, schedules, and too many logistical problems.”

On being asked if the ‘objective of filmmaking has changed in Bollywood,’ the actor-director replied,” Yes! Now the more jingoist you are the more popular you become, because this is what has been ruling this country. It’s not enough to love your country but beat drums about it and you have to create imaginary enemies. What these people don’t realise is that what they are doing is very harmful.”

He continued, “It’s troubling that films like Kashmir Files are so enormously popular while films made by Sudhir Mishra, Anubhav Sinha, and Hansal Mehta, who are attempting to portray the truth of their times, don’t get seen. In fact, films like Kerala Story and Gadar 2, I haven’t seen them but I know what they are about. But it’s crucial that these filmmakers keep working and keep delivering tales.”

“They are accountable to future generations. People will watch Bheed and Gadar 2 a century from now to compare which best captures the reality of our day since only film is capable of doing that. It’s challenging to use abstraction to accurately depict life as it is. Regressive is a pretty good word to describe what’s happening, but it’s alarming that filmmakers are being persuaded to make films that glorify the wrong things and denigrate other communities for no apparent reason. It’s a risky tendency,” he stated.

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