After showcasing his film "Sita" in the 'Short Film Corner' at the 68th Cannes International Film Festival, budding Assamese filmmaker Kangkan Deka plans to send his regional work to more fests as he believes such platforms are beneficial for independent filmmakers.
The 31-year-old couldn’t attend the prestigious festival that concluded on May 24, but he is glad his film got some attention.
“I was supposed to go, but didn’t get my visa. A few people from Malaysia have shown interest in ‘Sita’,” Deka told IANS in a telephonic interview from Guwahati.
“I am sending it to more festivals... both international and India. A lot of new Indian film festivals have been launched too, like Goa Short Film Carnival. Film festivals are always good to get spotlight, especially for independent filmmakers,” he added.
The former drilling engineer says film festivals help to connect with producers, which is otherwise difficult.
“People don’t directly put money on you. A film fest is like a testing for us,” said the director, who has made two short films since 2014.
The alumnus of ZEE Institute of Media Arts, Mumbai is now working on his first feature film.
“I am working on a script of a feature film. It needs a lot of money and I can’t produce it myself. I am planning to do it in Assamese only,” said Deka, who made “Sita” at a budget of over Rs.100,000.
He isn’t too keen to enter Bollywood as it’s a “lengthy process”.
“You need to work as an assistant director first for a few years, but I am not against it. I want to do good films, but not masala ones,” he said.
The filmmaker, who has made “Bhagna Xapun” (Shattered Dream) -- a touching story of relationship between a father and his daughter -- and “Sita” -- based on a nine-year-old boy who gets emotionally connected with his goat -- wants that people should be able to connect with his work.
“I want to make films related to human lives. I like those type of stories. Someone should connect with my films,” said Deka.
He wants to tell stories through documentaries too.
“I want to make good films...short films, documentary or feature... I wish to explore every section of filmmaking,” he said.
He says making documentaries and short films have become easier, thanks to the digital era.
“It has become easier to make short films and documentaries because of the digital era. You just need good content to make an impressive film. Audiences’ taste is also changing. Low budget films or different genre films are getting highlighted too. A few weeks back, I saw ‘Margarita with a Straw’ in Mumbai and it was houseful,” he shared.
If things don’t go well in the film industry, he has a backup plan too.
“Sometimes, when you are working, you are not satisfied. There are times when you work just for money. In 2012, I quit my job as an engineer and decided to try my hand at filmmaking. I did a six-month course in filmmaking then made my first short film in 2014.
“If it doesn’t work out, I can always go back to my previous profession as I have seven to eight years of experience in the field,” he said.