This is the viewpoint of director Sartaj Singh Pannu, who basically belongs to Naushehra Pannuan, a small village in district Taran Taran, Punjab, but so far he has been practicing his filmmaking career in Bollywood only. Why? Because, he feels that in Mumbai he is more comfortable to pursue his art.
However Sartaj, who earlier has directed the films like Soch Lo and Nanak Shah Fakir, is now all set for the release of his first Punjabi venture Tiger. He agreed to direct the film as he says that through this film, he hopes to show the true essence of Punjab.
During an interaction with Sartaj, who was recently in Chandigarh to talk about Tiger, we came to know his filmmaking aspirations, and bit about the controversy of Nanak Shah Fakir.
While Sartaj was receiving his high school education from Mussoorie, his family moved to Canada.
“But I preferred to stay here in India only as couldn’t and I can’t see myself leaving my own country,” he recalls.
As he loves his country, Sartaj is equally passionate about making films.
“I don’t hold a professional degree in filmmaking and only out of my passion, I am able to think from a director’s perspective,” he adds.
No doubt that he is dashing enough to fit into the shoes of an actor too, but Sartaj is more comfortable in using his brain over his looks.
But, somewhere he is not satisfied with the way Punjab’s film industry works.
“Punjab’s heritage is so beautiful. We have beautiful poetry, culture, literature but unfortunately, we don’t value what we are blessed with,” laments Sartaj.
He adds, “I think Bollywood nowadays is keener to explore the essence of Punjab and perhaps, this is the reason that Punjabi filmmakers, singers or the songs like Kala Chashma are getting their due in Bollywood.”
Further, talk about the pending release of Nanak Shah Fakir in Punjab and Sartaj promises to release the film in Punjab on one fine day.
“We are working on it and I’m waiting for that one fine day when the film will release in its own state,” he says.
Meanwhile, Sartaj is not sure to continue with Punjabi cinema in future as he likes to work in Mumbai.
“If you ask me, then I’ more comfortable while working in Bollywood. The horizon is broader, the budgets are bigger and the technical support is better. Even you can experiment with your film the way you want. You don’t have the pressure to cater to a certain kind of audience. Punjab’s film industry lacks this kind o freedom,” says Sartaj.
Nevertheless, he made Tiger because his family wanted him to make a film which is close to his roots.
“I am quite optimistic about Tiger. This is based on a true story and I’ve tried my best to bring out the true essence of Punjab through this film,” says Sartaj while signing off.
Tiger, which stars ator Sippy Gill and actress Ihana Dhillon in lead roles will be hitting theatres in September this year.
For more news updates Follow and Like us on Facebook