Sanju gets screened at the La Trobe University in Melbourne
The International Film Festival of Melbourne closed with two special highlights - screening of the film Sanju and a tribute talk on Shashi Kapoor by actor Simi Garewal.
Sanju, which won Best Film at IFFM and also got the Vanguard Award for actor Ranbir Kapoor, was specially screened at the La Trobe University in Melbourne. The show was followed by a Q&A session with director Rajkumar Hirani and writer Abhijat Joshi.
The repartee between Hirani and the university students was a fun spectacle to watch. The director also answered questions like why he made a biopic on Sanjay Dutt. “We were actually writing Munnabhai immediately after PK when we happened to meet Sanju (Sanjay Dutt). He was out on parole and we met at his place, when he started venting out. He just didn't care who he spoke to. He had to get it out. I always had a professional relationship with Sanju, but that was one long evening. He has told us things about his life, things that I didn't know and I thought, that's a wonderful story. Abhijat and I went over to his place for five days and just kept recording while he spoke. People know about the drugs and the controversies. But there are so many aspects of his life that the people don't know about. We wanted to show the world the other side of the story, the relationship he shared with his father, his mother and the wonderful relationship he shared with one of his closest friends. We wanted the audience to see that side of him,” the director replied.
The other highlight of the evening was the special screening of the film Siddhartha, starring the late Shashi Kapoor and Simi Garewal. Simi gave a touching tribute to her co-star and dear friend.
Remembering the late actor, Simi reminisced, “Shashi was my friend and fellow actor and it is very common in India to praise someone after they've gone but I have always said this, Shashi Kapoor was the perfect co-star. You don’t want someone to interfere. You want someone to support you when you’re acting. You want someone well-behaved, punctual, who is polite and courteous with everyone and he was exactly like that. He was very professional and he had no ego at all. He would shake hands with everyone. He was amazing that way and I don’t know another actor in the world who would work in commercial cinema earn money from there and take it and put it into meaningful films like Kalyug and 36 Chowringhee Lane. But he had a passion for real cinema and he put his money where his mouth was. He started the parallel cinema.”