Superstars 2014: Vibhu Puri spins a moving Bambai fairytale

Indie or working with established production houses, first timers or veterans – these are the film directors who will make 2014 a better place to be in with their films. Vibhu Puri with his Bambai Fairytale makes it to the top slot.
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Updated on Dec 30, 2013 04:44 PM IST
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Hindustan Times | ByParul Khanna
Every year is about the people (and things) that make it fabulous. And so, in our year-end issue, we always look forward to who’s going to make it big next year. We ask a jury of experts in our favourite fields – films, music, sports, technology – to suggest names of people and products that will hit the jackpot.

Some of the names we have recommended in the past – MS Dhoni, Sneha Khanwalkar, Amit Trivedi, Deepika Padukone – did very well for themselves, as predicted.

With the last issue of 2013, we bring you a list of people – newer names who, our jury says (and we agree), are going to stand out in 2014.

We wish them all the luck, and we wish you, our readers, a very happy New Year! Take our advice and party hard – the rest will follow!

Vibhu Puri

‘Cinema moves a person even more than love’

He’s 33, from Delhi’s Paharganj, and like Vikramaditya Motwane, has been mentored by director Sanjay Leela Bhansali. His debut movie is Bambai Fairytale, a biopic about an Indian scientist (Shivkar Bapuji Talpade) who constructed India’s first unmanned airplane. It stars Ayushmann Khurrana, Mithun and Pallavi Sharda. "I am driving my director of photography, costume and production designers mad. They swear they will never work with me again," he laughs, referring to his fastidious approach.

Puri’s cinema is defined by a strong sense of colour, good dialogues, music and a belief that films are primarily a visual medium. Though adept at drawing and painting, his middle-class parents insisted he have a ‘proper education’. After a degree in business studies, he joined an advertising firm, got bored, joined Jamia Millia Islamia, Delhi, to study mass communication, got bored there too, and just when his father was starting to worry, Puri found his niche at the Film And Television Institute Of India, Pune. "It is there I realised I wanted to be a storyteller," he says. "I want to tell stories in my own way, stories that make the audience laugh and cry." He had a tough time getting finance for his first film, but finally convinced his producers.

Making the cut

Film and Television Insitute of India (FTII), Pune, alumnus Vibhu Puri’s debut movie Bambai Fairytale will release in October or November. His graduation movie, Chabiwali Pocket Watch, was the official entry from India to the Student Oscars (a competition for college and university filmmakers). It still is the most watched FTII film on YouTube.
Our judges Monga co-founder of Sikhya Entertainment, and CEO (AKFPL)

Amit Kumar

Very promising. He has a strong sense of what a story should be like.

Kanu Behl

His film Titli could become big internationally. Behl’s debut will be very strong.

Vibhu Puri

His work is larger than life. Puri’s’s got scale, is great with colours and has a unique style.

Vasan Bala

Great at handling urban stories. Music and scripts are his strengths.

Shlok Sharma

Good with Indian nuances and at translating them. Pathak senior creative director, studios, Disney UTV

I’m looking forward to Abhishek Kapoor’s Fitoor because he’s going to direct a love story based on a classic piece of literature.

Remo D’Souza is going to go up a few notches with ABCD2 – Any Body Can Dance.

Looking forward to Raj and DK’s Happy Endings. They push the envelope. Patil vice president, Yash Raj Films

Ali Abbas Zafar

Masaledar! He’s good with large scale entertainment (Gunday).

Abhishek Chaubey

Great vibe, music, humour, a distinct flavour in his films. Watch out for Dedh Ishqiya.

Nupur Asthana

She’s a lovely storyteller, unassuming, handles contemporary relationships and love wonderfully. She will come out with Bewakoofiyan.

Vinil Mathew

Strikes the right balance between style, emotion and story.

Vikas Bahl

Candid style, the promos of his next, Queen, look very interesting.

Gauri Shinde

She’s a universal storyteller with the right amount of drama. Vibhu Puri Bambai Fairytale looks beautiful, has great colours, wonderful dialogues, an interesting script and spectacular songs.

Ashima Chibber

She’s great with humour, and has a unique voice.

From HT Brunch, December 29

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