Film Director Hemant Bhatia speaks with India Journal correspondent Jatin Naik on his Travelogue
What were your past projects in India?
“In India. my association with films started off in 1998 when I produced and directed a Punjabi TV serial telefilm called ‘Vanjeray’. It was about a Theatrical group who travelled to different places in Punjab to perform and enlighten the people on social injustice. And then thereafter I also did my training in acting in an institute (Harish Magon) who happens to be my mentor and guru. He gave me a lot of guidance and support for my acting and training projects in India. Besides, that I acted in a film called ‘Hindustan Ki Kasam’ produced and directed by Veeru Devgan and in an English TV serial called ‘A Mouthful of Sky’ produced by Mahesh Bhatt and directed by Ajay Goel. After that I worked with Asha Parekh on her TV series ‘Dal Mei Kaala’ and then ‘Aurat’ produced by B.R.Chopra’s production, ‘Aahat’ directed by B.P.Singh, theatrical play ‘Court Marshal’ (Prithvi Theatre, Mumbai). I was also involved in a comedy play ‘Saali Poori Gharwali’ which ran for around 80 to 90 shows. I have also worked with Om Katera from the Theatre group called ‘Yaatri’”.
How was your initial experience coming to Canada?
“I came to Canada with my family in 2003 and it was a very different experience for me. Fortunately for me, I didn’t have problems finding a job for myself but I felt something missing in the mosaic of my life. My passion was ignited when I got a break working in the film ‘Flight 182’ with Sturla Gunnarson on the subject of Air India flight 182 telecast on CBC. That’s when my passion took flight”.
What are your upcoming projects in Canada?
“I am close to done shooting of a documentary Travelogue ‘Inroads of India’ and planning to initiate a couple of new movies. The subjects are very exciting and innovative and in pre-production stage. We are also currently working on TV commercials and Ad films too”.
Tell us more about the documentary Travelogue ‘Inroads of India’?
“I conceived the idea of ‘Inroads of India’ in Montreal, thanks to a close friend Wasim who always desired to visit India but due to personal reasons has not been able to do so. That gave me an idea of creating a program about showcasing India and bringing it to the world and has since then become my passion to bring its people and culture to the world stage which would not only benefit Indians living abroad but also people of other communities”.
What are you plans about the Travelogue?
“My original idea was to project India for the second and the third generation of Indo-Canadians who have never been there. My idea is to show India in a positive manner. There’s more to India than a ‘Slumdog Millionaire’. We have worked very hard in creating this documentary on the Post production. My associate Director, consultant and editor Samuel Dass, has been working hard day and night in putting together the final product. He is excellent in Film editing and is competent in handling Productions”.
Whats next now for you now?
“After ‘Inroads of India’ it’s the world, as they say ‘The world is my playground’. Please support our documentary film ‘Inroads of India’ which in true words says India is incredible internally and externally!”