Nijo Jonson and Rohit Gaba started a production house – Purani Dili Talkies and recently one of their videos went viral. Read on to know more about these very talented filmmakers.
Tell us about your life journey in brief?
Nijo – I started my career as a travel consultant in an airlines company. After working for few years, I decided to quit the job and follow my dream of film making. I saved some money and immediately joined a film school. Before completing my course I got an offer to co write a screenplay in a south Indian film. From then its no looking back.
Rohit – I started my career assisting directors like Danny Boyles, Subhash Ghai, Ramesh Sippy etc. After working for few years I met Nijo in a film. We were in same college and were part of same art and culture association, but we hardly ever talked. We developed a good rapport during the shoot and decided to set up a company independently. Within few months Purani Dili Talkies was set up.
What prompted you to become a filmmaker?
Nijo – I was involved in dance, music, writing etc from my college days. I was an imminent part of my college cultural society. We had won more than hundreds of awards in various categories. This exposure developed a sense of expression through art and culture. Filmmaking is a medium which can submerge all the possible art forms in one. It gives you the power to create. This sense of power and expression attracted me towards film making.
Rohit – I was a part of college drama society. After the college I went to Mumbai as an experiment to work in film, which happen to be Slumdog millionaire. The kind of success it got, pushed my career and started getting a lot work. I slowly fell in love with process of making films and continuing the same. It gives a great sense of excitement and relaxation at the same time.
Tell us about your team, if you have?
Our Director of Photography – Kartik Thapliyal – Me and Kartik met each other in a film school and have worked together since then. I can’t recall when was the last time he surprised me with his camera work because our thought process is almost same.
Me, Rohit and Kartik started the company together. After that Shiva Sharma came, who takes care of the second unit camera. Pawan Rawat and Harish Sharma assists in direction. Satish Chandra helps in editing and Monty Bisht takes care of production.
Apart from that Siddharth Parashar is a very important part of the team, he composes music for all our projects. We got hold of him after listening to few of his tracks online.
Vipin Peter is the latest addition to the team who takes care of PR and marketing for us. We have been together since college.
In one line we all are friends making a living, together.
How many/ What kind of movies you have made?
In short film we started from horror – 6th floor, then abstract – Smaerd, then Drama- Kamera and now the most difficult of all comedy – WTF – Waat The Fart.
We also did a feature film with Anurag Kashyap called The Last Act. It was a suspense thriller.
What is your dream/ vision?
Idea is to make meaningful work. It could be entertaining or not, but we try our level best to keep it simple, logical and believable.
What difficulties you face as an independent filmmaker?
Coming from middle class families, there is a constant struggle to make money. Fortunately we are blessed with very supportive family and friends around us. Every time we are in trouble we go to them and it gets sorted.
Any fun/ memorable incident?
During the shoot of Kamera- Short film, we went to garbage dump and Kartik fell in the drainage while doing the camera. Fortunately camera was safe but we made a video of the same and we blackmail him every day. Apart from that we convinced Shiva to do a complete nude scene of police interrogation in the film The Last Act. The moment he took his clothes off, around 20 phones came out of our pockets, clicked his pictures and put it on facebook and twitter 🙂
What advice you’d like to give to someone who is interested/newbee in filmmaking?
We feel no matter how hard it would be, just don’t quit and keep motivating yourself. This is a very demanding and tough profession. But it is one hell of a journey.
Anything else you’d like to share?
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Nijo and Rohit’s work:
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