How To Make A Bollywood Blockbuster

Meet Bedabrata Pain Producer and Director, Chittagong Until you don’t have your own rags to riches story in Mumbai, you don’t really qualify to be an idol for those who look up to you. Bedabrata Pain though, is one of those rare riches to rags story. As a senior research scientist with NASA, who has 87 patents to his name including digital imaging that he invented in 1993, you can imagine the kind of money this scientist-turned-inventor-turned-filmmaker would have been making. Still, he left all of that for the uncertain world of Bollywood. That needs a lot of courage. Infact when FHM met filmmaker Anurag Kashyap at one of the press meets, he went on to say, “I’m sure Bedabrata wouldn’t be paid as much in Bollywood as he made when he was scientist, so his decision to take such a step is commendable, and that’s what testifies for his commitment towards what he believes in.” Bedabrata, popularly known as Bedo, says, “Had I continued with NASA, I could have been promoted to a higher position because I was doing good work. I was absolutely stable, but this stability scared me a lot. I asked myself if this is all that I wanted to do in my life or if there is something more to me than this. Even during my days in IIT Kharagpur and Columbia University, I was actively involved in theatre. One of my friends once reminded me about some play in which I had worked, and told me how much he liked me in it. That’s when the whole focus changed, so I quit NASA in 2005, and started to focus on Chittagong,” shares the director whose directorial debut has been well received by film reviewers and audiences who believe in good cinema. Talking more about his transition, Bedo says, “I knew I had a good script because I had worked really hard on it. I shot the 36th script of the film, so you can imagine the kind of writing I did. A lot of producers wanted to make this film, but then came the recession in 2008, and the money suddenly vanished. That was the time when I had almost given up, but then I received payments for my patents at NASA, and sourced every penny of it in the film. However, that’s not the only thing that I had to struggle with. People don’t take first-time filmmakers seriously, so you have to be really confident to get things done. My Mumbai crew and Kolkata crew didn’t get along well, so I had to also make sure that peace prevailed on set. Then the equipments wouldn’t arrive on time. I remember, we were shooting a sequence on an abandoned railway station, and at the last moment we were told that we don’t have the necessary permissions even though we had papers to prove otherwise. Another time, some villagers mobbed us and I had to pacify them by telling them that we were just shooting a film, and that we meant no harm to them. An established filmmaker will have a team to deal with it, but a first timer has to deal with all of this himself,” says the filmmaker who firmly believes that “there is a thin line between bravery and foolishness”. “I was in a trance for the last 2-3 years when I was trying hard to get this film released somehow. Now that it’s out, I first want to take a break, and decide how I will earn my living because I have nothing left on me, but I’ll continue to make films I believe in. Else the entire purpose of leaving NASA would be of no use.” he says, ending on an inspiring note. Bedo's Tips For newbies 1. Be prepared to struggle. 2. Until you don’t have a good script, don’t make a film, because no matter how big your star cast is, in the absence of a good script, they will fail to deliver. 3. Understand that results are not in your hands, so don’t give a lot of thought to it. 4. A lot of people will try to influence you and ask you to do things that would make your movie more saleable, but you have to believe in yourself, and make the film you want to. Believe in your vision, and act accordingly. If you start compromising, you will not make the film you wanted to. 5. Don’t think a lot about the audience because not everyone will like your film. What You Can Learn From Him His ability to get on board prestigious names like Anurag Kashyap, lyricist Prasoon Joshi, music directors Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy, and Academy Award winner sound designer Resul Pookutty. A first timer has never before managed to bring together people of such repute for his debut. - Kumar Saurav                                            

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