By Natalia Ningthoujam
New Delhi– Veteran actress Shernaz Patel says it’s a good time for the Indian film industry as stories and good scripts are getting importance.
Shernaz has been part of the film industry for about three decades now, and she says it has evolved over the years.
“Stories are becoming much more important. I think the audience also wants to see films where script and story matter. People are exploring so many different stories and that’s fantastic,” the actress, who has featured in Bollywood films like “Guzaarish” and “Black”, told IANS.
Without naming anyone in particular, she also shared that the young actors are challenging themselves when it comes to their craft.
“The younger lot of actors… As much as they may be stars, they are also actors. They are also challenging themselves and doing different things. So, I think it’s a very good time for cinema. Regional cinema is doing so well. The way Marathi cinema has taken off… it is a good time,” she said.
Shernaz has also heaped praise on the online medium, which is increasingly gaining popularity.
“Online is a lovely medium that has opened up. It’s especially a boon for young actors. They don’t have to target just Bollywood when they come into the industry. They have lots of options to choose from. It’s fantastic,” said Shernaz, who is also a theatre artiste.
But she has no preference when it comes to mediums.
“As an actor, you enjoy every medium as every medium gives you its own experience. They have their own way of working and attract different audiences. Actors want to do everything… every possible medium,” she said.
And yes, she is exploring mediums and formats. The audience can watch her in Adhiraj Bose’s latest short film titled “Interior Café Night”, presented by Royal Stag Barrel Select Large Short Films — a portal which is the hub of Indian short films. It is a 12-minute short that depicts love, loss and reunion.
“The script is lovely. That’s what attracted me to it. It’s a well told story. It’s sweet and Adhiraj is a very talented director. He was clear about what he wanted. It sounded like a nice film to do,” she said.
The short film also stars Naseeruddin Shah. How was it working with her “John Day” co-star?
“We are old friends. We have known each other for many years. It was comfortable and wonderful to work with him. He is a great actor and a great friend,” she said.
The strong bond between the two is evident in the film, which has been viewed over 6,00,000 times on YouTube.
In recent times, talented actors like Manoj Bajpayee and Radhika Apte have also tried their hand at the short film format. Is it the future then?
“No. It’s a lovely thing to do. It’s not time-consuming. It’s like writing a short story and writing a novel. You can’t compare the two. They are completely different. It’s an interesting way to communicate a story in just 10 minutes.
“But it can never replace a long format,” said Shernaz, who simply wants to continue working.
“I think an actor would just want to do good challenging roles regardless of the genre or medium… to work with people who will push the boundary,” she said. (IANS)