Symbiosis International University in Pune welcomed New York based acclaimed filmmaker Rohit Gupta on Aug 29th for a guest lecture to its Symbiosis Institute of Media and Communication.
Gupta, whose credits include films such as, Another Day Another Life & Life! Camera Action… that received high critical acclaim jointly winning over 100 international awards and accolades shared his journey, from a 4 week short stint at the New York Film Academy to a successful filmmaker in a short span of 3 years. The students at SIMC got an opportunity to do a case study and interact with the entrepreneur turned filmmaker about both his award winning films. It was an interactive session where the students asked him about how he came across the script, how the process of shooting was, the hardships he faced, how he leveraged social media in marketing, branding, distribution and so on.
“A film is created only once, so give all you can at the time. Process of creating films is no different than any other business models I have experienced. Approach filmmaking process as collaborators not competitors”, said Gupta.
Gupta answered questions candidly and shared his experiences about the overall process and awards he has won. He also screened bites from his next production, an American comedy feature film, Midnight Delight to release in 2014 and spoke a great deal about the need for filmmakers to believe in the process and in its content.
“Students at SIMC get an extensive exposure to how the Indian television industry works, and they understand the need for a strong script, great production values, meaning and subtext layering during the shot breakdown and how the edit moulds the mood of the film. They also study the television management angle to content generation. It was a unique opportunity for them to get a first hand glimpse into the marketing of it from an international figure”, said Nikhat Powell, Head of Academic Delivery, Audio Visual Dept. at SIMC.
“A complete usable product has a value. There’s definitely an audience for your product, somewhere”, Gupta said. Different people have different objectives. It’s not just creative gratification. It has to go beyond that”.
The journey of his gradual evolution from an entrepreneur to student, student to filmmaker with confusion and chaos at every stage, is something every youngster faces at the start of their career, and could therefore connect to the transition process instantly. Gupta is also in talks to collaborate with the institute to provide an international platform for qualified student films to enter film festivals in the US.
The humility, straight forwardness and humor with which Gupta put forth his experiences made it an interesting, highly interactive and overall an inspiring session, and the audience enjoyed every bit of it.