Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Masterclass in Filmmaking - Learn from LSD



Dibakar Banerjee’s LSD is a Master Class for aspiring film makers. Now film making need not be a boon only for the elite, even the common man can now see film making as a great career option. Here are the four important lessons we can learn from the film:

LESSON 1: DON’T COMPETE WITH LARGE CANVASS FILMS

Firstly, Dibakar did not try to compete with a mainstream film. As Dibakar puts it “What we are trying to do with this film is actually a totally new kind of film making”. He proved a point that shooting on digital does not mean poor production quality.

Mainstream films are made at mainstream film budget i.e. over 20 crores. Not many aspiring film makers have such money to use, so they are better off choosing their subjects accordingly. Don’t attempt to make a ‘Karan Johar’ film without mounting it on that big a canvas, else it will leave you in no man’s land.

LESSON 2: MAKE LOW BUDGET AN ADVANTAGE

The amateur filmmaker never has a budget on his side. So turn it into an advantage the Dibakar way.

He says “Because of the kind of subjects that I tackle and the kind of liberty that I want to take with my film making, it is fine with me to exist in the smaller by lanes of the great industry that Bollywood is”.

The lower budget keeps his thinking focused. He thinks, and executes accordingly. He chose actors that neither dented his budget nor affected the film’s prospects.
An intelligent maker knows that if the content is hard hitting the camera would not matter be it a film camera or the low cost digital camera used in LSD. On the other hand, Dibakar effectively used the changing scenario in film production and exhibition. Over the last few years digital has made its presence felt and any amateur film maker should use the digital medium to tell a story.

Making a film on a low cost digital camera could save a film maker more than Rs 40 lacs! That’s a lot for a small film

Dibakar chose the content so that he could make the film at a shoe string budget.

LESSON 3: PLANNING WITH THE RIGHT TEAM

The effort on pre production was one of the keys to the success of most films and this film is no exception.

Any aspiring film maker must do his homework well in terms a detailed bound script, appropriate casting, rehearsals, locations, choice of technology and a team that even though may not be the best but still suits his temperament.

LESSON 4 : LOW BUDGET DOES NOT MEAN POVERTY OF BELIEF

Dibakar says “We are trying to change the rules”.

Dibakar chose to follow his own method of making a film that is off beat yet commercially viable, like all his other ventures earlier (Khosla Ka Ghosla, Oye Lucky-Lucky Oye)

As reviews say “Banerjee’s cinematographer Nikos Andritsakis, armed with digital cameras has given ‘Love Sex aur Dhokha’ a gleaming, abstract beauty”.

So a low budget choice need not be a reason for making a bad film. If you can’t follow the rules, you change the rules. Inability to throw around money does make the vision or craft less important. It is important that the film maker believes that.

So LSD gives the industry a few lessons and maybe a new high in terms of content and film makers.

Courtesy: Accord Equips. Read the full article here

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