Mumbai | Rahat Kazmi’s upcoming drama Mantostaan, about the stories of writer Saadat Hasan Manto, might be dealing with India Pakistan Partition but the director is certain it won’t land in any controversy.
The film brings to celluloid celebrated Manto’s some of the most controversial stories, Khol Do, Thanda Gosht, Aakhri Salute and Assignment. There is nothing in the film which will hurt the sentiments.
The approach to filmmaking should be clean and without any motives. We have retained the same zone, characters, names from the story. We did not feel the need to add or subtract anything from it, Rahat said.
When asked why he chose to name the movie Mantostaan, the director said, When Manto had written those stories, there was a huge controversy, but now people who write literature appreciate it.
Pakistan said he (Manto) was Indian and India said he was a Pakistani. He was in fact a world in his own and hence I titled the film ‘Mantostaan’, Rahat said. The filmmaker, who made his directorial debut with 2009 comedy Dekh Bhai Dekh, starring Gracy Singh, went on to make Identity Card.
Rahat, who hails from Jammu and Kashmir, had to scout for locations, which would resemble the era of Partition. I didn’t have to work on the language or to get the nuances right since there is not much of a difference between from where I come from and where the stories are set in.
But to get the period setting right was a task, he said. We had to scout for locations, which would look of that era, we didn’t shoot anything in the studio. We mostly shot in Punjab and Jammu. Rahat also plans to show the film to Manto’s family.
They are very happy with it. They said through this film, the work of Manto will reach a wider audience, which is the biggest compliment to me. They have also applied for visa. I plan to hold a special screening for them in Kashmir, he said.
The film stars Raghubir Yadav, Sonal Sehgal, Shoib Nikash Shah, Tariq Khan, Virendra Saxena among others.
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