Debutant director hopes to strike it big with small film
For debutant feature film director Anant Narain Tripathi, a Kanpurite, the journey of making a film is no less a story.
For debutant feature film director Anant Narain Tripathi, a Kanpurite, the journey of making a film is no less a story. His first film ‘Yahan Sabhi Gyani Hain’ hit screens this weekend and was shot in his hometown with Atul Srivastava as lead actor.
“I came on board as a story writer of the film. Then I wrote its script, dialogues and co-wrote the screenplay. It was much later I that I came on board as director and here we are with the film which took three years to see the light of day but we are happy that it did,” said Narain on his recent visit to Lucknow. His wife, Jyoti, is the co-producer of the film.
Born and brought up in Kanpur, he started his educational journey in Lucknow as a hosteller at Bal Vidya Mandir. He also studied in Indore and Kanpur and then did a media appreciation diploma course. “I did some theatre in Delhi. In 2009, I went to Sydney did a film-making course and made short films too. One of them won an award too. I interned at a video-production unit and learnt the art.”
After three years in Australia, he came back and started a company for documentary making which did not work out. “I tried making promotional corporate films which was the trend then in India. So, I kept doing workshops and content-writing workshops. I made a short film ‘The Dawn’.”
He then decided to make a feature film. “I was hired as a writer for this film. As I was not experienced in this, so I tried take someone on board but then finally decided to write it. My producer (Alka Sharma) too, was struggling and they liked the story a lot. Initially, I wrote with a horror element in it but they wanted to make a family drama. So, I rewrote it with multiple drafts and this was finalised.”
Then started the hunt for a director. “Together we pitched many directors but then my producer asked me to direct and that’s how I came on board as director. As luck would have it, the producer was diagnosed with cancer that too in its last stage. So, we started and completed the project in literally two months. In between, we improvised the screenplay too and we shot the film with limited resources and funds.”
As they were in post-production process, the producer passed away. “I thought all was finished. But, his son (Siddharth Sharma) came on board and gradually we started everything again. It took us three years to complete the project. Releasing the film is also a big struggle especially if it’s a small-budget film and is pitched opposite big releases. We started slowly with few shows but the film has got a good response and reviews,” he said.
Narain is hopeful they will be able to make a profit. “It’s a small budget film and we knew it well that it won’t be ruling the box office. But, with cinema, rights and hopefully with a good digital release, we believe to do well,” said the director.
He has already written his second film and is gearing up for it. “This time, I am pitching a big production house. It’s again a UP-based story and can be shot in Agra, Mathura and Delhi-NCR. But, right now, the focus is to apply all ‘gyan’ on his debut film,” he said.