Short Films : Impactful & the Future

by June 1, 2019 0 comments

It is tougher to convey the same vision in a reduced time frame than in a full-length feature, believes filmmaker Avalokita DuttA.

In this age of short attention spans, a condensed format of different forms of entertainment prevails in our consciousness. With an abundance of digital platforms, the short film format is here to stay. Filmmaker Avalokita Dutta, who is all set to debut with her short film Gutthi, believes that these are the future. “People nowadays want short, sharp and tight bursts of entertainment, which they can watch at work, at home or on the move on their phones,” she says.

If we compare them to feature films, they have traditionally been treated as a poor cousin, especially at film festivals. However, their brevity makes them ideally suited to the digital platforms.

Avalokita explains that short films engage the audience for a little time but simultaneously provide great quality content. And that is what today’s generation needs. She says, “Anyone can make these because this is the digital era. Moreover, these films could be about anything and everything that a person wants to talk about. These screening platforms have made short films more democratic. It’s so amazing. Who would not want to see the world through so many different eyes.” Short films for sure have two undeniable roles. “First, they allow new talent the chance to get noticed and refine their style. Second, they also help to encourage creativity and innovation that includes new ways of telling stories,” she adds.

Given their obvious importance, why do short films continue to remain in the shadows? Well, “that’s more a sociological question,” she says. “The obvious answers could be — lack of great actors. Or the penchant that we as an audience might have for the epic.”

Avalokita apprises us that short films are very important for filmmakers as they give a playing field to them. Moreover, it honed their skills as a short film needs to be tighter in what it is trying to convey as compared to a feature film. It’s more difficult to say something vital in shorter time.

“The audience has become more accepting of short films. There’s a huge difference in today’s time and 90s when there was a star system. People headed out to watch films only to see the big stars on the screen. And now cinema is taking a turn for something better. People prefer content over everything. They want to see actors presenting quality content. Take the example of Badhai Ho. The same has happened with short films because the audience has begun to watch films for what they are about rather than who stars in it,” she adds.

Avalokita’s Gutthi is about about friendship between two girls. She explains that she wanted to treat friendship with the same amount of importance that love stories get. She feels that friendship between two females hasn’t got much exposure in our cinematic space. It’s her take on friendship in an intimate manner. She says, “Relationships wither away with time. These two girls are dreamers. They make films to change the world. But over the years, their friendship has become monotonous. The spark has completely gone.”

The short film is one of six films titled Shuruaat Ka Twist.

The only commonality between the six films is the theme, that is of ‘twist’. Every film is the interpretation of the word twist by six different directors.

She adds, “The twist in my film is what happens when one girl decides to move out.”

Amit V Masurkar, popularly known for directing Newton, mentored Avalokita for this film. She says, “I have never worked with Amit before. But we have known each other for quite a long time. We met at a film festival. I am much younger to him as he’s a senior filmmaker. But he always treats me with great respect and equality. I don’t even know if I deserve it. May be I have earned it.”

She tells us that she was a bit scared about this whole mentorship thing. “Because we both are extremely opinionated people and have our own visions for the kind of cinema that we want to make. But he gave me quite a free range. He placed more faith in me than I have in myself. Amit asked me to be responsible for every decision that I take. I have learnt from him that you need to have respect for another person’s vision,” She adds.

She further tells us that she’s a control freak and wants to dominate every single person in the crew. But thanks to Amit, “I understand how important it is to allow freedom to everyone. You need to give people space and the liberty to work as per their strategies. So that they can contribute in the best possible way. Maybe you could actually get something extraordinary out of it. Because there’s a difference between when one brain works and when many brains work for the same goal in unison.

Writer: Ayushi Sharma

Courtesy: The Pioneer

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