'SUNDAY EXCLUSIVE' - Nischal Basnet : 'Loot 2 will definitely raise everyone's eyebrows'
Nepali film industry -- a few years back was a laughing stock for the audiences. People rarely visited the theater to watch the work portrayed by the directors. There were debates I still remember--cities vs. rural areas--the people living in the cities areas and the majority of the youth cared less for the new movies poster being lifted up and old ones being pulled down the walls of the cinema halls. The producers had a hard time convincing the youth to watch the movies.
Nepali movies had always cashed in for the misery and sorrows, the misery of the Hero, who has his sister sitting unmarried at home, his mother sick and his life a motive to help them get a life. Then he meets a girl whose father is a rich gangster. The hero always suffered throughout the movies, well most of the movies had a script like this. The Hero flying all above the sky to wipe the villains out, And at the end somebody dies and the movie happily ended somehow.
And a few years back everything has changed the mentality of the maker and the mindset of the audiences. Being a Nepali I am proud of it, and with every improvement, I will be. We are now hearing news about the records being broken, the halls in the cities being sold out. Moreover, the Bollywood movies being taken out of the screen just because the Nepali movies tickets were being sold comparatively more, seats were not enough to fit the mass outside waiting eagerly. We are now in the position where Bollywood movies have no chances competing in our market with new Nepali movie releases. Time and situations have changed which has definitely benefited both the makers and the viewers.
Well, there is a reason for these changes. Out of the various reason represented in the pie diagram, Nischal Basnet occupies the major space. A director who came and changed the aspect, who came and leapfrogged the decades of the same old same old Nepali cinema in just 2 hours to a new dimension with his movie 'Loot'. Here is a short interview with the man behind the camera Nischal Basnet by me Biplob Prasai.
How are you?
Fine, THIK- THAK (coughing)
Are you sure?
Well, this cough. It has been with me for a long time now. It’s okay.
From Loot to Loot 2, how has the Nepali industry changed?
Personally, it has changed a frustrated me into a happy me. And professionally we can notice various changes in the Nepali film industry.
People who used to look for reasons to watch movies now watch it just seeing the trailers. People now are excited. Good news, they are talking about Nepali movies like they used to gossip about Bollywood and Hollywood.
Songs never did excite people in the past (true) but now we can witness, the inclusion of pop songs and others are being popular. The whole scenario has changed, the culture has changed. Audiences have also started to appreciate our work and the movies. The qualities of the cinema have changed.
Would you like to take the credits for these changes?
Credit isn’t a thing to be taken, I won’t also. There were few films before 'Loot' which were released that were completely different from the traditional movies of our industries. 'Loot' was just fortunate enough to reach masses of peoples that are why people say Loot was a change maker, but sincerely there were movies before Loot.
What to expect from loot 2?
It’s a revenge story. The movie starts from where it previously ended. It’s an action thriller. And beside this, I am sure that people will like the story. The story will lift the eyebrows up I guess. This is a movie about how criminals were born during the devastating earthquakes that hit Nepal last year. 'Loot 2' is about revenge, how they get out of prison.
Will there be a twist like we saw in Loot?
Do you want to ruin my movie (laughs)? I choose not to say anything about this matter. Let’s just find it out when the movie releases.
You have set a benchmark with Loot; therefore people will surely enter the hall with big expectations for Loot 2. What’s your say?
I know people will surely have expectations. I watched the movie and I liked it very much. The movie didn’t disappoint me. Well as a maker of this movie I feel it’s a good movie, it is a good watch. I hope the audience will like it too. The architect knows his carvings if I wouldn’t take pleasure in watching the movie I would identify nobody would.
And as for comparison, there definitely will be a comparison made; Loot 2 with Loot. I can’t do anything about that. History has shown that nothing can beat the originals.
Behind the scenes moment while shooting Loot 2?
There were many. As for now, I can laugh but while shooting there were no actors who didn’t suffer physical injuries due to the actions scenes. There were an intense accident and injuries.
There was this incident; a stuntman had to perform stunts with his bike. He had to fly the bike above, he did it but while landing he fell down and did a crash landing. I was worried and I went toward him, instead, he asked me “how was the shot?” I was like forget about the shot tell me how are you? He said he is okay and there is nothing to worry about, he acted calmly. I was bit relieved so I checked the shot and was okay.
Two days later, I met him and was surprised to see bandage over his hand. He had fractured his finger with the crash landing. I asked him what happened since he told me he was alright at that moment. He replied “teti khera ta dai ma Josh ma thea kei vaena, paxi feel vayo”.
I can laugh about it now.