Friday the 13th will mark the release of Kuttey, a Bollywood movie that features Naseeruddin Shah, Arjun Kapoor and Tabu in lead roles.
It will be directed by Aasmaan Bhardwaj, son of music composer-turned-director Vishal Bhardwaj and singer Rekha Bhardwaj.
“My confidence will get a boost from your applause. Kuttey is my individual film. People should go to theatres to watch this movie, not because it is being directed by the son of Vishal Bhardwaj but to encourage me. This is my first film and it is being released at the start of the year. I need your blessings so that my movie can become a success,” said Aasman to Patriot ahead of the release.
Kuttey (meaning Dogs) is basically a dark comedy. Besides Shah, Tabu and Kapoor, it also features Radhika Madan, Konkona Sen Sharma and Shardul Bhardwaj.
Tabu plays the role of a lady police officer and dressed in a khaki, she looks the part. Kapoor, whose long tresses are missing in the movie, plays a dark character while Naseeruddin Shah performs the role of a gangster.
The film is about rival gangs who end up facing each other leading to bullets and blood.
Vishal, who is the producer along with Luv Ranjan and Bhushan Kumar, said in a statement, “Kuttey is extremely special to me as it is my first collaboration with [son] Aasmaan and I am excited to see what he does with it. Luv Films and Vishal Bhardwaj Films are also coming together for the first time and I am immensely excited about this association.”
Vishal had added about the cast in the statement, saying, “I have worked with Naseer Sahab, Tabu, Konkona and Radhika on different films throughout my career and Aasmaan has brought them all together in one film itself. We cannot wait for the audience to witness this captivating thriller on the big screen.”
Aasmaan did a diploma in International Baccalaureate at Ecole Mondiale World School (2006) in Juhu. Afterwards, he pursued Bachelor of Fine Arts in film, cinema and video studies from the School of Visual Arts, New York, USA.
He then he did a one-year course in Bachelor of Fine Arts in playwriting and screenwriting from the New York University.
The 27-year-old started working as a managing partner at his father’s film production house called Vishal Bhardwaj Pictures Private Limited and then worked at his father’s music company named Vishal Bhardwaj Music Label LLP in Mumbai.
As an actor, Aasmaan made his debut with the 2005 Bollywood film The Blue Umbrella and played the role of Biniya’s friend. This film, based on Ruskin Bond’s novel by the same name, got much appreciation from the audience.
Besides acting in the Blue Umbrella, he has also assisted his father in Bollywood hit films such as Omkara, Kaminey, The Scoundrel, 7 Khoon Maaf and Patakha among others.
While this is his first big film, he has directed a few short films like The Identities, The Thief and Murder on the Deccan Express.
The Identities is a short 14-minute film in which agents from the RAW, CIA and ISI plot to assassinate each other in a sleepy little town.
The Murder on the Deccan Express (2017) is a nine-minute film about a disastrous sequence of events that take place on a train.
The Thief is a 23-minute film based on Ruskin Bond’s novel by the same name.
So, he has some experience of direction as well as acting. Importantly, all his short films have dealt with different types of stories.
Having a pedigree must have surely helped.
Vishal, the father, is known for his brilliant music compositions and he gave music to movies like Maachis, Satya and Godmother.
Vishal also directed hit films like Makdee, Kaminey, Maqbool, Talvar 2 and Patakha among others. He also wrote the movie Talvar, which was directed by Meghna Gulzar. All his films got hit at the box-office and due to his dedication to cinema, he has received seven national awards.
Vishal has expressed happiness as well as concern over Aasmaan’s decision to enter film industry as a director. He recalled the first time Aasmaan had told him about his decision to become a director.
“I was happy but at the same time, I was concerned because filmmaking is a stressful job. It’s a difficult profession,” said Vishal in an interview to Press Trust of India.
“You have to manage so many people, from writing the script to finding the right actors and technicians. You are doing event management all the time. Whenever you get a little time, you try to realise your vision.”
Vishal, who is the son of popular lyrics writer and poet Ram Bhardwaj, knows a thing or two about struggling to make a mark in the film industry.
Before getting popular and famous, he used to play harmonium for little known ghazal singers at the various food festivals in Delhi’s Pragati Maidan but later on, he was introduced to RV Pandit, who offered him a job in his CBS music company in Delhi.
A friend recommended him to filmmaker Gulzar, with whom he successfully collaborated on television serials such as Jungle Book, Alice in Wonderland and Guchche. Vishal composed the music for Maachis, a film directed by Gulzar.
At that time Vishal was very new and Maachis was his first film with Gulzar. The success of Maachis and the subsequent commercial acclaim helped him become director and he started with children’s film Makdee which was acclaimed by the critics. He then made the first of his trilogy of Shakespearean adaptations, Maqbool, which was based on Macbeth.
Aasmaan’s mother Rekha Bhardwaj, also a famous singer, has established herself as one of the popular singers in Bollywood.
She has sung many popular songs including Bidi Jalaile in Omkara which became very popular among the masses. That and Namak Ishq Ka from the same movie brought her stardom.
One has to see whether Aasmaan does justice to his legacy with Kuttey. Most fans are eager to see this upcoming film and they have a lot of expectations from this young director.