Bollywood goes rustic

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Rustic is the new uber cool. After the success of Bollywood films like recently released Shuddh Desi Romance, Raanjhanaa, Bhaag Milkha Bhaag, Gangs of Wasseypur, Ishqiya and Paan Singh Tomar among others, the coming few months will see a slew of films including Gori Tere Pyaar Mein, Besharam, Bullet Raja, Dedh Ishqiya and Revolver Rani that are being shot in rustic locales.
From narrow bylanes of Banaras to small towns of Harayana, Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan among others, filmmakers are turning to small town settings for rustic backdrops.
Designer Pria Kataria Puri says, “Be it fashion trends or movie trends, everything evolves in circles. What was prevalent in the yester eras is back with a bang. With some of the most popular hit films including Mother India, Sholay shot in such surroundings, no wonder the trend has made a comeback and is helping promote the rich ethnic diversity of India. When you are making a movie on an athlete training in a village, you cannot afford to create the same mood by shooting it in an exotic backdrop.”
Relatable script and familiar surrounding arouse the attention of the viewers instantly. Explaining the trend, trade analyst Amod Mehra points out, “Such films are doing well as they represent the dreams and aspirations of a commoner, who is filled with raw emotions and an attitude that average movie-goers find relatable.”
Not just the rustic surroundings but even local dialects are entering mainstream cinema. Pawan Kumar Mishra, assistant manager, programming at PVR Cinema, says, “Regional languages and dialects add a desi tadka to the role and make the character more authentic. In fact, regional dialects from the hinterlands of UP, Rajasthan and Haryana depicted in the movies are often picked up by youngsters these days.”
Several fresh and talented directors actually hail from small towns and are familiar with the surroundings. “They have been successful in recreating the same settings and feel in their films, resulting in massive hits,” adds Mishra.
As the maximum income is generated from audiences in cities and abroad, hence filmmakers are exploring the rustic backdrop to the fullest extent. “Metro cities and their issues have been much explored now. Rural backdrop offers a wider scope for freshness and allows you to present something that your audience is not familiar with,” concludes Abhishek Chaubey, director of Ishqiya that was shot in the eastern belt of Uttar Pradesh and Gorakhpur.

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