‘When did art or cinema become about Rs50-100 crores?’
A more than two-decade-old unfulfilled dream of Kranti Kanade is finally coming true. The Chaitra (2002) director’s latest project, CRD, is an attempt to revisit his youth, when he couldn’t participate in Pune’s popular one-act play contest,Purushottam Karandak. The film is inspired by the event and revolves around college theatre and focuses on competition in the arts.
Kranti says, “When I was in college, I couldn’t be a part of the prestigious Purushottam, because they thought I was too young to write. The theatre festival was important to students and life changing for many. It still is a platform for future artists, rebels and leaders. But the reason to go back to that time and world was the fact that we as a society are very obsessed with awards and medals. We are building a nation that celebrates medals and winning. However, how is this improving our living conditions, civic disobedience or traffic congestion?”
Kranti is troubled by how art and cinema have been commercialised. “When did art or cinema become about Rs 50 and Rs 100 crores? Since when does it matter how much a film earned? I always thought the main purpose of cinema is to nurture and enlighten our lives. But now it is overplayed so much, it has become a kind of fascism. Films have automatically become a part of public discourse and consciousness. Sadly, we are not questioning whether a film is ethically right and wrong,” he says.
The National Award-winning film-maker says he is not a social person, likes to keep to himself and rarely mingles with people in the ‘industry’. He emphasises this thought by stating that people often unknowingly treat themselves as products, then go on to question whether they are successful or not. “That is not the true journey of a human being. Reducing somebody’s life to a career is an insult to the infinite possibilities that each person has. I have been a film-maker, tree planter, social worker, and none of that needs to be publicised or glamourised. I am doing it because everyone has to do it. I have never thought of this as an ‘industry’. I have always looked at it as a bunch of artistes trying to express themselves.”