Film making is the most expensive art. But it is no deterrent with the passion fuelled youngsters in Nagpur. They say, believe and are set to prove that cinema can be produced without huge monitory backing. The captain of the ship, Piyush Pande, says “One needs to just start making films. Everything falls in place automatically.”
Nagpur Today interviewed Piyush Pande along with his hero, Siddharth Jichkar and Associate Director/Actor, Aditya Sharma to know more about their upcoming feature film “Mike”. Oozing with enthusiasm, this group of young chaps speaks about their project with twinkle in their eyes. Their passion for the project and film making is clearly visible through the interaction.
The film is journey of a person who finds his calling at an unexpected moment. As they say all those who wander are not lost, this person also goes through a wavy journey before he finds his occupation for life. From Nagpur to Mumbai and then again back to Nagpur, he goes through various highs and lows in life. As he settles (?) down in the mundane professional life, he finds himself unhappy and looks for ways to break out of his stereotypical life.
He decides to tour Ladakh on a Royal Enfield.
“We shot in Ladakh for about 15 days”, Piyush Pande informed us, “We did it in the toughest weather just before the season for Ladakh Tourism gets over. Every turn we took, introduced a new weather condition to us. We shot with a very small crew of 10 which includes everyone from Director, Actors, Assistants, Mechanics, etc. It was a hard toil but from the footage we got there, now it all seems worth it. Most part of the film is about how one can discovery oneself on a bike trip.”
Piyush Pande, an engineer, hails from Business Family and is a biker himself. He learned Film Making in Delhi where he worked with Jim Goldbum and Adam Weber on their documentary “Tomorrow We Disappear” as Assistant Director. He also made a documentary film ‘The Man who planted a jungle’ which got warm response at River to River Florence film festival, Italy. The film got various awards at different festivals. It was about Jadav Payeng, who planted a forest on a barren island on his own.
“Our film “Mike” starts from Nagpur and then we show reality of glamour industry of Mumbai from where our protagonist returns disillusioned. Then he tries living the “normal” life but then his bike trip to Ladakh changes his life completely. For Better!” Piyush continued, “We are happy that we got very eye-catching visuals of the journey and we are promoting it as a biker film but we promise you that it has much more.”
It is interesting to note that while both Piyush and Aditya are bikers from start, Sidhdharth Jichkar, playing the protagonist of the film never laid his hands on a bullet.
“It is quiet a heavy and bike bike for me.”, he quips, “Initially I had a lot of trouble but I had to show comfort and peace on my face. It was a tough job but I am glad I could do it.”
Sidhdharth did his engineering from Birmingham University, UK. There he got to work in short films which made him pursue acting as a career. Then he learnt acting from Kishor Nameet Kapoor. He is also associated with various theatre groups.
“Knowing that Sidhdharth is not comfortable with riding, we ensured that our journey has even more tougher challenges.” Aditya Sharma added with a chuckle,”We made him ride at places where even pro riders will think twice before going.”
Aditya Sharma is involved with many short film and video projects filmed in Nagpur. Recently he was part production of “Happy Nagpur” music video which was highly appreciated by Nagpurians. Apart working as Associate Director, he is a playing a character in the film too. Understanding that this is a small crew, he helped in all the departments including Casting, Dialogues and Production Design.
They feel thankful to Bike Rentals Manali and Ladakh Bike Rental company for their complete support. Now the film is in post production and will be soon ready to be release. They will be targeting the festival circles as well as for a mainstream commercial release.
Just before concluding the interaction, I asked, “You told me almost everything about your movie. I just want to clarify one thing. Is ‘Mike’ the name of the your protagonist, the character played by Sidhdharth?”
Piyush took a long pause before answering, “Well, that is the USP of our movie which we are not going to reveal till the film is released. Mike is not the name of the protagonist but you will have to watch to film to know ‘Who is Mike?”
Well, we are looking forward to it and to know “Who is Mike?”
– Prashen H. Kyawal