‘Godavari’ is an ode to Nishikant Kamat: Marathi filmmaker Nikhil Mahajan


PTI, Nov 24, 2021, 11:27 AM IST

Panaji: Filmmaker Nikhil Mahajan says his Marathi feature film ”Godavari” is his way of paying tributes to his close friend and mentor Nishikant Kamat, who died last year at the age of 50.

Mahajan said the project was born in the wake of Kamat’s death on August 17, 2020 and he wanted to celebrate the life of the filmmaker who he used to fondly call Nishi sir.

”That day, we lost our closest friend, mentor and one of the best filmmakers of India, Nishikant Kamat. We were very close to him. When he passed away, Jitendra Joshi, who is the lead actor and the co-producer of this film, called me and said ‘Nikhil, we have to do something for Nishi sir’. I said what better way to celebrate him than to make a film for him,” Mahajan told PTI in an interview.

”So, it’s pretty much where the project started and it’s an ode to him. We also named the lead character after Nishi sir,” he added.

Best known for directing critically-acclaimed thriller drama ”Drishyam”, action film ”Force” and Irrfan Khan-starrer ”Madaari”, Kamat passed away after a two-year battle with liver cirrhosis.

Remembering Kamat, Mahajan said his death was a big blow to Indian cinema.

”He was a senior to me. I really looked up to him and his work. It was a big loss and a big shock for us. In the last two years, we have all lost people who were close to us. So it felt very natural to do a film that explores the idea of mortality,” the filmmaker said.

A philosophical exploration of life and death, ”Godavari” takes its name from the titular river that flows from Nashik, Maharashtra to the southern states of the country.

The film follows the story of a grumpy man named Nishikant Deshmukh, played by ”Sacred Games” actor Jitendra Joshi, and his family who try to cope up with deaths of two close relatives.

”Godavari is referred to as the Ganga of the south and a lot of the western Maharashtra population comes to this river for the last rites of their loved ones. So it’s the river that holds tremendous cultural and spiritual significance for this big demographic of India.

”And the movie is about this man who lives right next to the river but he hates the river and everything that it stands for. It is the story of this man and his family who grapple with two deaths — one that they know about and one that takes them by surprise,” Mahajan said.

The theme of the movie predominantly talks about the idea of tradition and how it is something that’s passed on through generations, the filmmaker added.

”It is important that we value our traditions but at the same time, I think it is very important that we, as a society, also accept modernism. We should also change with the times, but while changing we should also keep the things in mind that make up our core.” The film was recently screened at the ongoing International Film Festival of India (IFFI) under the Indian Panorama section. It also features Gauri Nalawade as well as veteran actors Vikram Gokhale and Neena Kulkarni.

Mahajan, 37, said the film was shot during the coronavirus pandemic that made things quite difficult for the team.

”It was a very difficult shoot in a town that is densely populated around the river. We had a lot of senior actors and we were really worried about their health. Also, it was a new way of shooting with all these bio bubbles and restrictions.

”So it took time for us to get used to that. Working against all these odds was really challenging, but I think somewhere Nishi sir was guiding us throughout,” he added.

Asked why Marathi cinema often presents stories that are intimate in nature, Mahajan said there is no hero worship in the industry.

”In Marathi cinema, there is no star system. People come to watch the actors, not the stars. It is a culture that has grown and enriched because of a phenomenal drama theatre movement. It is full of really good performers.

”The audience is very aware of the difference between a star and an actor, and they don’t go to watch a star. Since there is no star system, there is also no hero worship of any sort.” The audience is ”evolved” and have great taste, the filmmaker said, adding their expectations from filmmakers and actors are very high.

”Someone said to me that in the Hindi mainstream cinema, there are a thousand common people watching a story of one extraordinary person. However, in Marathi cinema, there are a thousand extraordinary people, men and women, sitting and looking at the story of a common man.

Udayavani is now on Telegram. Click here to join our channel and stay updated with the latest news.

Top News

Karnataka MLC polls on Dec 10; 90 candidates in the fray

Mumbai COVID-19 genome sequencing: Only 2 of 211 samples show Omicron presence

Mangaluru: Two arrested in four cases of house theft; Rs 16.50 lakhs worth gold seized

‘Victory of democracy’, says Harsimrat Badal after farmers suspend agitation

Quality that Virat has as batter and leader is required in our team: Rohit Sharma

Bird flu outbreak reported in village in Kerala

Gender pay gap deepens during COVID, women left behind on pay hike, bonuses: Study


Related Articles More

VicKat wedding telecast rights sold to Amazon Prime for a whopping Rs 80 crore

‘Jai Bhim’, ‘Shershaah’ tops the 2021 IMDb list of Indian movies

Cine personalities condole General Rawat’s death in helicopter crash

Ankita Lokhande injures her leg before her wedding to Vicky Jain

Katrina Kaif, Vicky Kaushal gear up for their haldi, sangeet ceremony

MUST WATCH

MANGALORE THEFT CASE

Untimely rains spell trouble for paddy harvest, farmers use machine instead

Udayavani news Bulletin – 8-12-2021

Karnataka : A Success Story of Karamballi Couple in Jasmine Cultivation Udayavani

Cow Eats Gold Chain at Sirsi


Latest Additions

Govt procures paddy worth nearly Rs 64,000 cr at MSP in 2021-22 mkt year so far

Karnataka MLC polls on Dec 10; 90 candidates in the fray

Mumbai COVID-19 genome sequencing: Only 2 of 211 samples show Omicron presence

Sabarimala pilgrims die in freak road accident in Kerala

Kerala HC terms as ‘atrocious’ language in Malayalam mystery horror film ‘Churuli’

Thanks for visiting Udayavani

You seem to have an Ad Blocker on.
To continue reading, please turn it off or whitelist Udayavani.