Bollywood has lately been discovering the vibrant small towns and villages of India as the filmmakers have turned the concept of ‘new locations’ for their films.
Many forthcoming films have taken this path of having the location of the film set in small towns. Upcoming films like Jackky Bhagnani's Mitron, Manmarziyaan, Milan Talkies, Loveratri, Kedarnath, Arjun Patiala, Ek Ladki Ko Dekha Toh Aisa Laga, Luka Chhupi, Batti Gul Meter Chalu have chosen to highlight small towns. Here are a few of them:
Jackky Bhagnani and Kritika Kamra starrer Mitron
The film has been shot on the unexplored locations of Gujarat. The city of Ahmedabad has been explored intensively for the film which traces the journey of Jai (Jackky Bhagnani) and Avni (Kritika Kamra), as they set on the path of finding themselves amidst their social and cultural backgrounds.
Abhishek Bachchan, Vicky Kaushal and Taapsee Pannu starrer Manmarziyan
For Bollywood actors who are used to foreign locales, working at a small-town location has its own charm. ‘Manmarziyan’ has extensively been shot in Amritsar and other parts of Punjab.
Shahid Kapoor-Shraddha Kapoor starrer Batti Gul Meter Chalu
“People want to see their own country,” says producer Bhushan Kumar, whose next movie Batti Gul Meter Chalu has been shot in one such small town - Tehri, Uttrakhand.
Salman Khan Films’ Loveratri
Abhiraj Minawala who is making his directorial debut with Loveratri, shot the movie in Baroda. He says while shooting for the film, he discovered that it’s such a “culturally rich city”. He elaborates, “The flavour of this city is not seen in recent times [in cinema]. Also, what adds value is the audience in these towns. Now that our reach has increased so much more, they instantly connect with such films.”
Ali Fazal starrer Milan Talkies
Ali, who shot in Lucknow and Mathura, for Milan Talkies, feels that the “the appeal of foreign locales has been a very relevant aspect in Bollywood films”, but shooting in India is a different experience altogether.
“I think films that are shot in the heartland are more relatable because the people in those films are characters that you’ve come across or may come across in your real life. And that just drives the plot home! Such films are popular because a majority of Indians belong to, and come from, the heartlands and not the metros,” he says....