Filmmakers Nitesh Tiwari and Vetri Maaran in conversation at the 50th edition of IFFI

While the 50th edition of the International Film Festival of India has begun, there were some interesting Masterclasses and In conversations that took place on day 1 today.

A session called ‘From the Director’s Chair’ with Dangal director Nitesh Tiwari and Tamil filmmaker Vetrin Maaran was moderated by journalist and film critic Naman Ramachandran.

The hit director who recently gave a blockbuster with Chhichhore said, “I’m a self-taught filmmaker. I never really thought that I would direct a film someday. I left IIT, Mumbai purely out of my passion of writing. Not many people know that with my first salary I bought a TV, with the second one, I bought a VCR, and with the third one, I got the membership of Shemaroo. In my 10K salary, I used to buy 800 rupees DVD. I am glad that my first film Chillar party fell in my lap.”

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“I understood the aspects of Bollywood by the time Chillar patty came my way due to my advertising background. Besides that, I wrote two screenplays before Chillar Party for which I hadn’t received money until today,” he laughed.

He further said, “When BR Films called me to make the sequel of Bhootnath, I and my writer Piyush decided that if we can create something good, only then we will make it. When the idea of a Bhoot standing in elections came up, my producers liked the idea and we got a go ahead.”

Talking about Dangal, he revealed, “I met my friend Manish from Disney and he gave me a paragraph to read and I liked the idea. Later, we met Geeta and Babita Phogat and got back with so much content. We also realised that besides the story of these girls, it was the father’s story too. We met Aamir Khan for the narration and it was my most pressured narration ever. Though Aamir cried during the narration and agreed to do the film.”

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National Award winner filmmaker Vetri Maaran, who helmed films like Aadukalam, Kaakka Muttai, Visaaranai said, “I need around 2 years to write and make a film. I need to live in that world.”

“I made Visaaranai keeping the film festival circuit in mind. Anurag and Guneet helped me to push it. Initially, I was worried to have a direct theatrical release in Tamil Nadu. For the west, they think my film was very violent but when I went to Venice with Chandrakumar, people hugged him post the screening.” he added.