I detest gimmicks like item mumbers in films: Jahnu Barua

New Delhi, July 17 (IANS) Multiple National Award-winning filmmaker Jahnu Barua detests gimmicks as they make him feel uncomfortable. He prefers making movies in the Assamese language as he is not compelled to include elements like item numbers in his craft, which he feels are a reflection of a filmmaker's weakness.

Barua has made National Award-winning films "And the River Flows", "Aparoopa" and "Bonani" in his mother tongue and even showed his craftsmanship in Hindi movie "Maine Gandhi Ko Nahin Mara".

"I don't like gimmicks because I feel uncomfortable. In the 1950s and the 1960s, movies that were commercially successful didn't have item songs. We have started polluting our creation," Barua told IANS.

"If people add spice in films to make them sell, it is a weakness of the filmmakers," he added.

His film "Baandhon", released across India July 5 by PVR Director's Rare, has been inspired by the 26/11 Mumbai terror attacks and is the first Assamese film to be commercially screened outside the state.

Although he has tried his hand at Hindi movies, Barua is more at ease making Assamese movies as his creativity remains intact.

"I enjoy making Assamese films more as I can concentrate on the content. Nobody disturbs me.

"In the case of Hindi films, people start interfering. For instance, how do you justify an item number in your film if it has nothing to do with the story? But you are asked to include it," said the director, whose another Hindi film "Har Pal", is yet to come out.

"I don't get bothered with all these things while making Assamese movies. These kinds of interferences disturb a director's mind and the film too," said Barua.

A filmmaker should touch various aspects of life in his cinematic offering, he felt.

"When 26/11 happened, I was in Goa. It shook us all. As a filmmaker, I thought that many films would be made in India on the incident, but surprisingly hardly any film was made. As an Indian filmmaker, I was shocked and also felt ashamed about it. So, a few years later I decided to make a simple film on the tragedy," Barua explained.

"Tragedy or comedy is part of life. You shouldn't shy away from tragedy or sorrow. Storytelling includes everything," he added.

"Baandhon", produced by the Assam State Film Finance & Development Corporation, was named the best Assamese film at the 60th National Film Awards.

As many directors are now shooting in smaller cities, Barua urged his colleagues to also explore the northeast.

"The whole region is naturally beautiful. The Brahmaputra river is visually very strong. A complete film can be made on it. Filmmakers can also explore hills of Assam and Arunachal Pradesh. Even the beauty of rains can be captured," he said.

(Natalia Ningthoujam can be contacted at natalia.n@ians.in)

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