Amit Masurkar is one happy man. His film Newton has just been selected as India’s official entry to the Oscars. He gushes, “It’s like a windfall. We first got all those amazing reviews days before the release. Then on the day of the release, we get to hear the film is going as our entry for the Oscars. What more could I ask for?”
What made Amit do a film on the electoral process? “After my first film Sulemani Keeda, I wanted to do something within the political space. And I didn’t want to make a film about corrupt netas, scams and graft. We’ve seen enough of that. As I thought of what to do next, visions of pollings booths, voting machines, and presiding officers kept coming to my mind. That’s how Newton was born. I wanted to go into a place where we still don’t ever go. The electoral process is still not practiced properly in many areas. Unless we sort that out, we cannot hope to plod ahead with the democratic infrastructure,” he explains. But our films usually don’t make it beyond the entry gate.
Says Amit, “For now the fact that Newton has been selected as India’s official entry is in itself a big deal for me. I am still trying to process that information. It’s still to sink in. Whether we make it to the shortlist or win or not are thoughts that are far away from my head right now.”
Amit is confident his producers will do whatever it takes to give Newton a fair chance at the Oscars. “My producers Manish Mundra and Aanand Rai are people with vast knowledge of cinema and how to take it where it needs to go. They will do the needful,” he says.
In the meantime, Amit has his fingers crossed. “At the moment, the film’s box office results are the most important. We’re hoping the film gets an audience,” he says. As for not getting swayed by the raves and the Oscar nod, Amit says, “I have the most matter-of-fact and practical parents and girlfriend. They’re making sure I stay grounded.”...