Filmmaker Santosh Singh
Filmmaker Santosh Singh

Director Santosh Singh talks about his series, Ranneeti: Balakot & Beyond, and upcoming film, Nausikhiye

An entertaining comedy, the film has an outstanding ensemble cast comprising Abhimanyu Dassani, Amol Parashar, and Shreya Dhanwantry

In the landscape of modern entertainment, rarely are the sacrifices of unsung heroes etched on the screen. But storyteller Santosh Singh, just unravelled one such saga in his latest series, Ranneeti: Balakot & Beyond inspired by true events, namely the Pulwama blast and its aftermath leading up to the Balakot airstrikes and the aerial combat that occurred between India and Pakistan after a hiatus of 50 years. The director opens up about his series, sharing insights that transcend mere filmmaking.

Q

How did you take care that the incidents were shown accurately?

Filmmaker Santosh Singh
Filmmaker Santosh Singh
A

The reality of this event surpasses any scripted drama, so our focus was simply on capturing it accurately. We aimed at keeping the story as close to reality as possible, straightforward, and simple. We took a practical approach by portraying there's no clear villain in this story. It's about two countries and their people, each doing what they believe is best for their nation's safety. Viewing the emotions through this lens allowed us to capture them in a genuine and meaningful way.”

Q

How did you decide on such a credible cast?

A

The vastness of this story posed a big challenge for me and the writers. We struggled with the question of whose story we were trying to tell - was it about Pulwama, Balakot, the aerial combat, or the aftermath? To navigate this, we crafted two powerful characters, played by Jimmy Shergill and Ashutosh Rana, who stand at the epicentre of the narrative. Jimmy Shergill was always our first choice for his role, and his portrayal in the show demonstrates why. When it came to casting Lara Dutta's character, we came across a few names, but it was her who stood out to us. She's an extremely strong personality, and that's what we were looking for.

Filmmaker Santosh Singh on the sets of Ranneeti
Filmmaker Santosh Singh on the sets of Ranneeti
Q

Upcoming projects?

A

I'm excited about my upcoming debut film Nausikhiye, which is set to release after Ranneeti. It has Abhimanyu Dassani, Amol Parashar, and Shreya Dhanwantry, along with an outstanding ensemble cast. It will be a hilarious and entertaining comedy experience.

Q

Any actor you wish to work with?

A

One actor I particularly enjoyed working with during my assisting days was Ranbir Kapoor. He's truly exceptional, and I would love to collaborate with him again in the future.

Filmmaker Santosh Singh on the sets of Ranneeti
Filmmaker Santosh Singh on the sets of Ranneeti
Q

What inspires you?

A

Directing has always been about capturing the essence of emotions. If I can nail the emotions of a scene, everything else falls into place. Emotions are the heart and soul of filmmaking, and getting them right is paramount to creating a compelling and impactful story.

Q

Who's your favourite filmmaker, and why?

A

I love Woody Allen because of his unique blend of humour, intelligence, and his own neurotic persona.

Q

Any recent series you watched and liked?

A

Gentlemen by Guy Ritchie, it's amazing.

 Ranneeti: Balakot & Beyond is currently streaming on Jio Cinemas

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