Saturday, April 26, 2008

"Just like dirty cops, we have dirty cricketers too" - Kunal Deshmukh

First time filmmaker Kunal Deshmukh is quite forthright about his debut flick Jannat. He asserts that the purpose of Jannat is not to pull down a cricketer or demean the game of cricket. It is merely a piece of fiction which picks upon a few characters from the world of cricket that act and behave in a certain way.

"When you see a movie, it is natural to draw parallels with real life characters", reasons Kunal, "However, it doesn't necessary mean that the film is 'talking' about these very people. There is so much happening in the world of cricket or for that matter any other sport or field. In such a scenario, parallels are bound to be drawn."

But isn't the film pretty much showing the ugly side of cricket? "I am not denying that", Kunal is quick to respond here, "Of course the idea is to show how things gets twisted on and off the field with every passing minute of the match. Bookies, match fixers, players, umpires, referees - it is just not possible to have a corruption-less environment. Yes, there are good people as well as bad, moral or immoral - just as in the case of every field."

Taking his reasoning further, Kunal questions back, "We have so many films being made around the functioning of police or politics. Don't we show some cops or politicians in bad light there? We go ahead and tell the story, right? Just like dirty cops/politicians, we have dirty cops too! Plain and simple."

So why do we see so much brouhaha being made about Jannat and the story it is trying to tell? "For the simple reason that it is for the first time that a subject like this is being made. For the lack of any better cliché, the fact remains that cricket is just like a religion in our country. We try to look at only the positive aspects of the sport as we love it so much", shoots Kunal.

"However, all this while, we have seen sports films mainly telling the story of the underdog. Recent successes like Chak De India and Iqbal are the living examples of such films. Now it's the time to peep into the murky world of sports as well with Jannat", concludes Kunal.


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