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‘Chippa’ director wants more Indian films for children

The film will premiere at the Jio MAMI 20th Mumbai Film Festival with Star on Monday.

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Safdar Rahman

Mumbai, Oct 29 (IANS) Safdar Rahman, who featured in the Manoj Bajpayee-starrer “Chittagong”, has made his directorial debut with “Chippa” that has child actor Sunny Pawar as the protagonist. Rahman points out that there are less films made for children in India and he would like that to change.

“There isn’t a lot of children’s content that is being produced as much as it used to be. It’s probably one of the primary reasons for me to make a film about children because this is definitely something that I noticed back when I was teaching,” Rahman told IANS here.

“We used to have conversations that children learn so much from what is viewed as entertainment. They learn so much from the films that they see. Unfortunately, we couldn’t see a lot of content around us that children could relate to.”

So, it was on his mind that he would like to address this in his first film.

“I hope there’s more content for children made in this country,” said the director, who has worked with the non-profit organisation Teach For India.

“Chippa” is a story about the aspirations of a child who lives on the streets, told through a journey he takes into an enchanting world that he creates himself on one wintry night in Kolkata.

“This film can be watched by people of all ages. The protagonist is a child. It’s a film about children for sure. When we think of a children’s film, we think of animation films or we think of films that are meant to be enjoyed by kids.

“I don’t think ‘Chippa’ fits in that slot completely, though it is definitely made with young audiences in mind. I would be extremely curious to see what children make out of it.”

For him, it’s a story about a child.

“All of us have thought of running away from home after having a fight with our parents, we have thought of what we want to be when we grow up. Those are the things that this film deals with,” he shared.

Talking about selecting Sunny for the lead role, Rahman said: “‘Lion’ had just come out. I saw the kid and was absolutely blown away by him.”

Then he met Sunny in Mumbai.

“He loved the script. So, he was the first person we got on board. We finally shot it last winter,” shared the director.

Rahman has taught several children, but he had never dealt with a “star” child actor, who had attended prestigious international film award ceremonies like the Oscars and Golden Globes.

“He was only nine when he shot ‘Chippa’. He was like any other nine-year-old. He also has siblings so, he had this innate responsibility inside him. He was very sure of where he comes from.

“It was almost like working with a true professional. Of course, working with children is always very tricky. At the end of the day, they are kids. We had a gruelling shoot.”

The film’s team worked at night on the streets of Kolkata.

“It’s a film that lasts one night. So, we had to switch our body clock around. And of course, there were days when he was not feeling great and was a little bored.

“He didn’t know why we were taking the shot for the sixth time. But when the camera rolled, he never let it show,” Rahman said praising Sunny.

The film will premiere at the Jio MAMI 20th Mumbai Film Festival with Star on Monday.

“We just finished the film and I am happy that it is premiering at MAMI. It’s one of the festivals that I had attended before. We are looking for an early 2019 release,” he said.

What next?

“I haven’t given a lot of thought to what I want to do next. I want to chase a story. If it revolves around children, then great but I don’t want to limit myself to the idea that I only want to make content on children,” he said.

“But definitely, it’s something very close to my heart,” he added.

(The writer’s trip to Mumbai is at the invitation of the festival organisers. Natalia Ningthoujam can be contacted at [email protected])

Entertainment

TV actor Ashiesh Roy passes away

Cine & TV Artistes’ Association (CINTAA) expressed solidarity for Ashiesh Roy who died on Tuesday. The actor’s staff member confirmed the news that he was suffering from a kidney ailment and was undergoing dialysis.

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Television actor Ashiesh Roy

Actor Ashiesh Roy passed away due to kidney failure on Tuesday. He was 55. Roy had been keeping unwell for a while and was admitted to the ICU in a Mumbai hospital in May this year.

Ashiesh Roy’s staff member confirmed the news. He told that the actor died at his home.

“He collapsed around 3.45 am. He had a kidney ailment and his dialysis was also going on but he had gotten better in the last few weeks… His sister will arrive from Kolkata in the evening. A call on funeral will be then taken,” the staff member said.

The Cine & TV Artistes’ Association (CINTAA) expressed solidarity for Ashiesh Roy via a social media post. “#CINTAA expresses its deepest condolence on the demise of Shri Ashiesh Roy (Member since: January 2003)” CINTAA’s Facebook post read.

In May, Ashiesh Roy had announced on social media that he was on dialysis and even sought financial assistance. “I am in the ICU… Very ill. Dialysis,” Ashiesh Roy first wrote on Facebook, followed by another post that read, “Need your urgent money for dialysis (sic).”

Read: TV actor Ashiesh Roy hospitalised, seeks aid from fans

Following Ashiesh Roy’s social media posts, filmmaker Hansal Mehta also requested film bodies to provide financial assistance to the ailing actor. Hansal Mehta tweeted, “Actor Ashish Roy (Bond) is seriously ill, on dialysis and in the ICU. He has appealed for financial help on FB. I’m doing all I can to help. Can industry associations also help the ailing actor?”

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Comedian Bharti Singh, husband Haarsh Limbachiyaa granted bail in drugs case

While Bharti Singh was arrested on Saturday, Haarsh was taken into custody on Sunday. The NCB told the Esplanade court that the two have confessed to consuming ganja. Singh is said to have told officers that she would smoke weed procured by her husband.

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Bharti Singh Haarsh Limbachiyaa

A Mumbai court on Monday granted bail to comedian Bharti Singh and husband Haarsh Limbachiyaa in a drugs case. The couple, who was arrested by the Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) following the seizure of ganja from their house, was sent to judicial custody till December 4.

While Bharti was arrested on Saturday, Haarsh was taken into custody on Sunday. The NCB told the Esplanade court that the two have confessed to consuming ganja. Singh is said to have told officers that she would smoke weed procured by her husband. Limbachiyaa said that he purchased ganja from one peddler and that he would keep one bag of the contraband at his office and another at his house for consumption.

Search operations were carried out at the couple’s properties following a tip-off. The NCB recovered a bag with 65 gram of ganja from Limbachiyaa’s production house in Versova. Later, another search was carried out at his residence, Oberoi Springs in Andheri, from where another bag consisting 21.5 gram of cannabis and unaccounted cash of Rs 1.49 lakh were seized.

NCB officials said they had recently arrested a 21-year-old man from Khar Danda area, who was allegedly involved in drug trafficking. During his interrogation, names of Singh and Limbachiyaa had come up, after which raids were carried out at their residence, said an NCB official.

Singh and Limbachiya have been booked under sections 20(b)(ii)(A) (involves small quantity of drugs) and 8(c) (possession of drugs) and 27 (consumption of drugs) of the NDPS Act.

Singh, who has appeared in several popular television comedy shows, currently hosts another comedy show named Khatra Khatra Khatra with her husband.

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Bigg Boss 14: These contestants will be nominated this week, captain Kavita uses special power

Of what may come as a shock for many, Kavita has reportedly saved Eijaz Khan from elimination and nominated Aly Goni in his place.

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Bigg Boss 14 Salman Khan

After Weekend Ka Vaar episodes with Salman Khan, Bigg Boss 14 is once again ready for the nominations of the week. Like last week, this week also six contestants will be nominated for eviction. And since Kavita Kaushik is the new captain of the house, she will have a special power to save one contestant and nominate the other.

Of what may come as a shock for many, Kavita has reportedly saved Eijaz Khan from elimination and nominated Aly Goni in his place.

On Monday, Bigg Boss will initiate the nomination process wherein six contestants – Jasmin Bhasin, Eijaz Khan, Rubina Dilaik, Rahul Vaidya, Pavitra Punia and Abhinav Shukla will be nominated for elimination.

For the uninitiated, the nomination process looks similar to how Aly was asked to go inside the theatre and announce six names initially. So this time, it looks like Kavita, as the new captain of the house, will do the honours to put the six contestants into the cage.

In the promo, Pavitra can be seen nominating Jasmin for elimination and vice versa while Rahul nominates Eijaz and the latter nominates Abhinav in the task.

It will be interesting to see the changing dynamics in the house!

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