It’s one kid-centric flick that has captured the hearts of the classes and the hoi-polloi, alike. And what’s better, earned recognition from critics too, as I Am Kalam romped home with the ‘Best Story’ Filmfare award recently.
Writer of I Am Kalam, Sanjay Chouhan; Chottu/ Kalam as the protagonist and Nila Madhab Panda, director of the much-acclaimed film and personnel of SMILE foundation, the development organisation producing the film have all been in euphoric mode.
Says Nila Madhab Panda "I am a true believer of "Independent cinema and independent storytelling. I truly believe cinema is the reflection of society. As a child, the biggest entertainment is when you hear a story from your grandmother or parents. The treatment of I am Kalam is simply like that – it is told like the way our grandmothers used to tell stories to us. It’s a simple narration".
Sushilkumar Agrawal, CEO of Ultra, the Rs.3 billion film production, distribution and restoration company headquartered in Mumbai too feels elated on being associated with I Am Kalam, since he loved the socially relevant message the film inspired.
What’s better, Agrawal is putting his money where his mouth is and will be greenlighting Panda’s next venture admitting to be all kicked about the subject.
States Agrawal,"After watching I Am Kalam, I was fascinated about the film, its message and the director’s vision and immediately picked up all the rights of I Am Kalam. Ultra is proud to be associated with this film which inspires and elevates society. And when the Director, Panda,narrated me the story of his next mainstream film Jal bin Jalpari (The Desert Mermaid). I was very much confident of his vision and thought that this is the best opportunity to be socially active through mainstream cinema since it is a subject told in an adventure thriller format that has immense market potential both in domestic and international markets."
More delight on the anvil for cineastes who savoured the experience of I Am Kalam since sequels to the flick are being planned, that will traverse the journey of the protagonist Chottu/ Kalam, quite akin to the famed Apu trilogy of Satyajit Ray.