Monday, Mar 27, 2023 | Last Update : 10:15 PM IST

  Entertainment   Bollywood  10 Feb 2017  Rahul Bose is a jack of all trades

Rahul Bose is a jack of all trades

Published : Feb 10, 2017, 12:36 am IST
Updated : Feb 10, 2017, 6:32 am IST

Rahul has just finished his second directorial venture — Poorna — speaks about his experience juggling the responsibilities on the sets.

Rahul Bose
 Rahul Bose

It has been well over a decade since Rahul Bose put on the director’s hat with his 2001 debut film Everybody Says I’m Fine!, which won him the runner-up John Schlesinger Award for best directorial debut at the Palm Springs International Film Festival in 2003. Now, after his prolonged hiatus as director, Rahul is back with Poorna — a biopic on Malavath Purna, who is the youngest girl to have climbed Mount Everest at the tender age of 13 years and 11 months.

This time round, he has not only directed the film, but also produced and acted in it. Keeping the three roles compartmentalised may have proven to be a challenge for Rahul. However, according to him, the epithets of director and producer complement each other in a symbiosis that brings with it far more benefits than burdens. It is about this juggling of roles that he is going to speak at a Mumbai Local talk in the city.

When Rahul first got a hold of the script, it was in the capacity of an actor that he was approached. Taking up the role of producer and director happened by chance. He explains, “When I first got hold of the script, I was asked to act in the film. I was excited about the story. So, when they told me that they did not have the money to go through with the project, I thought, why not launch my own production company with this film?”

“I also realised that the best person to direct the film would also be me, since by then the story was completely inside me. Then started the most interesting journey between director, producer and actor,” recalls the director-producer.

Dividing his persona into the roles of director, producer and actor, Rahul explains how the director in him usually held sway over the other two, although the producer would often step in so as to curb the self-indulgent tendencies of the director. “It was important to think with a producer’s mind and create with a director’s heart. We never overshot. It was probably the first film in Hindi movie history to be shot according to schedule. That is because I had the shot breakdown and timing perfected to absolute precision before even starting out on the film,” he explains.

Rahul says that it was quite handy that he did not have to consult someone else or be tactful all the time. For instance, his shoot at Bhongir rock in Telangana would not have been so easy if he had not had complete understanding of the shots needed both from the perspectives of director and producer. “It took over an hour to climb up Bhongir rock; so taking loo-breaks became difficult. So the hours that we spent shooting there had to be organised with military precision to ensure that the whole thing went smoothly. There was no room for improvisation here, because the whole schedule would have been thrown off,” he reminisces.

On the flip side, the director’s creativity also came in handy for the filmmaker when they were snowed out in Sikkim. He recalls, “We had to shoot at a height of 15,000 feet in Sikkim and all the recced places were completely snowed out. Now the producer in me knew that it wouldn’t be possible to come back here yet again. So, here is where the director’s role came in, and we did the shoot in places where no recce had been taken place.”

While he did try to maintain an objective balance between his roles as director and producer, Rahul admits that there may have been times that he did let the director’s creativity overrule the producer’s pragmatism. “We did some additional shots in Mumbai with a green screen after the film was shot, and we did a few more in Kathmandu. I don’t think that other producers would have been okay with the idea of going to shoot in Kathmandu again, but I thought that it lent more authenticity to the shots,” he explains.

Acting, for Rahul, is of course, old hat. So, there were not a lot of surprises in store for him there. “The actor had lived with the role at least six months before the film was shot. So, I never had any trouble with the scenes. Of course, it is a different matter conceptualising the scene and actually having a look at it after that. Sometimes, you realise that it’s not working. Cinematically, if it didn’t work, it was out of the window,” he shrugs.

The experience of directing and producing a film was such a positive one that the director is already thinking of repeating it. He shares, “I don’t know about acting, but I definitely want to keep directing and producing my films. I already have another film in the works, which I am directing and producing.”

On February 17, 5.30pm onwards, At KitabKhana Fort, Mumbai

Tags: rahul bose, poorna