Here is a new trend of directors emerging in the 21st century. Lack of a lavish budget has thus created a new breed of directors called Indie or Independent directors. One of them is Shailja Gupta. This Kolkata-born director is originally from a Marwari family. Armed with a B.Com from the Calcutta University, she went on to do her Diploma Masters in Computer Programming. She has also been trained in the basics of a short film-making course from New York Film Academy.
Regarding her higher education, she says, “I never felt the pinch of grasping higher educational training, as my passion for filmmaking has given me a chance to work as an assistant script supervisor for Raincoat, launched in 2004. I have also spent 2 years on sets observing the filmmaking process while working on an unrelated project, a technology project for a film production house.”
Before becoming a film-maker, she has run a technology company for 10 years, marketing Hindi films internationally. Her first feature film was Walk-away (released only on the net) in New York. This she has done simultaneously with being the USA-Head for Shah Rukh Khan’s Red Chillies Film Production company. Despite being professionally close to SRK, she decided to release her movie independently, without his help. Do you find anyone with such self-respect now-a-days?
Regarding her future projects, she has decided to keep mum about it because it is too early to reveal much. I could only get her to say, “My next film will be a comedy which is in the planning process. I am also working on an art exhibition which will be a tribute to Indian Cinema’s 100th year.”
This article was first printed in Eve’s Times and has been reproduced here with the permission of the Editor, Swati Amar.