Right from Dhan Dhana Dhan Goal, Hate Story, Buddha in a Traffic Jam to The Tashkent Files, director Vivek Ranjan Agnihotri has always made a mark on Bollywood.
He is basking in the glory of a monstrous hit- The Tashkent Files which is dubbed as one of the most profitable films of 2019. The success of this film set the benchmark and came as a great gratifying startled to everyone.
As the film achieve sky-high, The Indian Film & Television Directors’ Association (IFTDA) honours director Vivek Ranjan Agnihotri with a coveted trophy for delivering an astounding Box Office success.
In a conversation with us Vivek Ranjan Agnihotri shares his feelings for being honoured; behind the scenes of making The Tashkent Files and all that.
Expresso: Recently you have been honoured by The Indian film and television director’s association. How was the feeling of being honoured?
Vivek: Awards are not a new thing for me but when you are honoured by your peers, especially directors, it’s a very special and overwhelming feeling. My heart fills with gratitude whenever I think about it.
Expresso: Talking about the Tashkent files, what made you feel that this film should be made and that it would be accepted by audiences? Do you think Tashkent Files has opened up a genre of serious and research-based cinema?
Vivek: The Tashkent Files was born out of intense disappointment with our democratic system which doesn’t allow its citizens any right to truth. I was very angry with the education system that has stopped teaching students about some great leaders like Lal Bahadur Shastri.
So, I decided to make a film that makes both the points. But I was fully aware that if it is not based on facts and hard logic than it will lose its purpose. So we spent close to 4 years researching and ensured that no angle is missed. I am happy that IIM Ahmedabad has included it in their official curriculum as how to use research for a successful film. Also that it ran for more than 00 days is a validation that researchers ch works.
Expresso: How was your experience roping in Naseeruddin Shah? What according to made him nod a yes?
Vivek: He just heard the character and said yes. These days he does very selective roles which challenge him. He found the script very interesting and he said that he wants to be part of it. He is an acting school and I will always cherish some great time I spent learning from him.
Expresso: Your hashtag for The Tashkent Files “#righttotruth” really caught on- it is a powerful tool and gave a sense of movement which is in progress. Do you intend to further this movement?
Vivek: This hashtag was not just a room for the film but for me its a life mission. I want to bring across this fact that for a democracy to be successful, the first fundamental right should be Right to Truth. I am glad that a lot of young people endorsed it. My next film The Kashmir files is a continuation of #RightToTruth