Posted On Sunday, January 30, 2011 at 02:14:50 AM
The Marathi audience has known director Sanjay Surkar as the maker of hard hitting movies like Aapli Manse, Saatchya Aat Gharat Chaukar Raja, Sakhi, Tu Tithe Mi, Raosaheb and Sukhant for a long time now. His serials with actor-producer Smita Talwalkar too follow the same pattern –frothy and light but heavy in content like the vastly popular Avantika.
Now, after his popular Hindi serial Aapki Antara, he is making a mark yet again as a producer this time, with the Hindi serial Dhoondh Legi Manzil Hume. The political drama follows young Alka whose accidental entry into politics changes everything.
• What is the reason behind taking up a Hindi serial. Is this your own project?
Yes, this is my own project. I had this storyline in mind. While I was doing Sukhant, Priya Mishra from Star One called me up. Honestly, I don’t keep daily soaps in mind. But I told her about this story and asked her about it. She liked it and we worked on it.
• The story seems promising and relevant. But will it stay that way, considering how serials today generally drag on these days?
I don’t think it is going to happen to this serial, as it will get interesting. Generally, channels just have a one line story and they continue on that. Then the TRP ratings get in. These serials don’t have a story. But I have one. Everything is decided.
• Most of your serials and films have been socially relevant. Why did you not pick a lighter topic this time?
You are right about my topics. I feel if what’s in my mind is promising, it should reach a larger audience. I feel both the media – films and teleserials – are big. If society has given us the power, we owe it to the society. If we make something, it should be liked and remembered. Why should we misuse that power? We should use it positvely instead.
• What makes you take up a particular topic?
Basically, I am a society person. I like to bring out issues of those who have been ignored. Like my next film, Stand By is on the state of sports in India. You have a billion people. But despite this, we don’t win. The reason is rampant politicisation and bureaucracy in sports.
• Smita Talwalkar and you have made some amazing serials and movies. What’s the secret behind this successful collaboration?
For good work, it is very important to get the right producer. Smita and I had worked together in theatre years ago and we clicked. Later, we got back. I could not have reached where I am today without her. Like before the film Saatchya Aat Gharat, was made, people used to complain that no movies were being made on the youth. Around that time, the Symbiosis hill incident occurred. And we realised that education was not what it was before. We thought the subject was very relevant. I was lucky to have her as the producer.
• They say that Marathi serials are going the Hindi serial way. Is that good or bad?
Basically, 80 per cent of the audience is at the grassroots level. People say — make serials for the grassroots level, for the revenue. So they have certain stories and reject others. Teleserials are a big media. We could do good projects. We are forcing the same stories on the audience and then blame them for the stories. It is our (serial makers) responsibility to watch what we make.
• Any new projects?
I am coming up with a new project called Laathi under Padmini Kolhapure’s production. It will star Sachin Khedekar, Nagesh Bhonsale, and others. It is on the issue of building apartments on old house — how children want swish apartments just like the parents who have agreed to construct a building in place of the old house.