About the Writer

My photo

Not so young Fashion Graduate From National Institute of Fashion Technology (NIFT), Delhi, India. Aspiring journalist. Amongst other eclectic hobbies, she likes writing and has written several poems and articles over her school and college life and now for a living. She would someday like to be be a more popular writer than just on her blogs. 'Tis a lady of grand splendor, who waketh in my bed every morning while the sun beckons her towards night...

Saturday, July 04, 2015

The fantabulous achievements of FTII chairman Gajendra Chauhan!

Protests over the appointment of Film and Television Institute of India (FTII) chairman are still going on. Students have come together to stand against the decision of the seat being taken by a certain Mr Gajendra Chauhan; as it is perceived that he was given the privilege of being at the helm of affair due to his political leanings and not experience in the world of cinema.

While the general consensus on this issue is that it was done to 'keep an eye' on the institution, its students and faculty--there has been no move as such from the Information and Broadcast Ministry regarding the matter. It seems that things stand at a stalemate.

Chauhan's experience has been questioned in this entire affair, but should that really be an issue?



Agreed that FTII does produce some of the best auteurs and artists that Indian cinema has seen since its inception in 1960 - Adoor Gopalakrishnan, Jaya Bachchan, Om Puri, Rajkumar Hirani, Vidhu Vinod Chopra, Sanjay Leela Bhansali, RajKummar Rao, Naseeruddin Shah, Shabana Azmi and the list goes on and on.

But are they the people that have made Indian cinema proud? OK Yes, they have.

Wrong question.

Are they the people who are shaping our country's cinema? Yes, that too.

OK, do they have the experience to shape the future of Indian cinema? Surely, but enough with the questions. My point is that these stalwarts don't stand a chance against Gajendra Chauhan's work experience.

He was recently quoted as saying, “People of FTII have not seen my capabilities.”

Come on! This man played Yudhishthir in the BR Chopra's epic 'Mahabharat', but people have been saying that this is his only big project! How dare they? How can they forget the great movies he has been part of?

I understand that most of them were B-Grade – but surely all of us know that these movies do better than the 'artsy boring types' which are shaped by Shyam Benegal, Smita Patil and the likes. What chance does National Award winning 'Bhumika' have in front of the 2000 hit revenge saga 'Billa No 786'?

If only that was it. He has played pivotal roles in 'Arjun Deva', 'Dharma Karma' 'Parwana', 'Vishwavidhaata' and the romantic movie 'Uff! Yeh Mohabbat'. By pivotal I mean not so much! It is not only B-Grade films that have starred Chauhan, there have been some hit Bollywood mainstream films too that featured him. He has done a variety of roles from being a car salesman in 'Baghban' to being a lawyer in 'Raja Ki Ayegi Baraat'.

How can anybody question the man who faced several challenges while preparing for all these character roles?

How can they say he does not have experience? Yes, compared to ex directors like Girish Karnad, Adoor Gopalkrishnan and most recently Saeed Akhtar Mirza, he does fall a tiny bit short. But it is certainly unfair to say that someone, who has been a part of the biggest epic Indian television saga but subsequently fallen flat on face, will not be capable of heading such a premiere institute of creative arts.

It is not for the lack of trying on Chauhan's part. After all, he did try to make it big on the small screen with 'Mohini', which was a TV movie, back in 1994, but his next big role on the 35 mm format came in the form of a horror show.

Are these contributions too small? Are these roles insignificant compared to the others' who were in contention for the post?

It is time that the high-handed film fraternity stops protesting against what can at most be called a slightly 'clouded' decision. And the intellectuals need to be brought down from high horses and made to realise that cinema for art's sake is but just a dream. We need the 'Hum Sab Chor Hain' kind of cinema too to make sure entertainment takes the forefront. To hell with being culturally superior!

This article was first published on zeenews.com
Post a Comment