Vinod Rawat opens up on his directorial Pushtaini, friendship with Rajkummar Rao and more in an exclusive interaction with India.com.
Pushtaini Director Vinod Rawat on Connecting to Roots And More: Vinod Rawat’s directorial Pushtaini is being screened at the MAMI (Mumbai Academy of Moving Images) Film Festival 2023. The actor also plays the main protagonist in the movie depicting father-son relationship in the backdrop of the serene locations comprising mountains and rivers. Vinod has also been an acting coach to Hrithik Roshan. The latter recently shared the trailer of Pushtaini on his Instagram handle and heaped praise on the movie. Rajkummar Rao, who has a cameo in the movie also sent his best wishes to the actor-director. Vinod, in his exclusive interaction with India.com speaks about Pushtaini and its connection with his ancestral roots, friendship with Rajkummar and more.
WATCH THE VIRAL TRAILER OF PUSHTAINI:
VINOD RAWAT REVEALS PUSHTAINI IS A STORY INSPIRED BY HIS ANCESTRAL ROOTS
On being asked about the narrative of struggling actor in Pushtaini, Vinod says, “This is a father-son story about a human being who wants to be seen and heard. It’s a universal thing that every person in this world wants some recognition. I found the aspect of struggling Bollywood actor as an interesting metaphor to the core father-son story. So, that’ s where I got the idea.” When asked about filming his directorial in hilly areas, he tells, “I hail from Uttarakhand, and I kept visiting my hometown in these past 20-25 years. Basically, my story is based on migration. The serene locales, especially the beautiful houses in villages are going into ruins with the passing of time. Then I recalled that my father did the same. He came to Delhi from Uttarakhand for better opportunities. Similarly, I was also in Delhi for the same reason, So, I wanted to connect these instances so that I can convey about my roots and the issue of migration to the audiences. That’s the reason my story revolves around mountains. In future also I would like to depict stories based on hilly areas but with a deep thought rather than using it merely for song and dance sequences.”
VINOD RAWAT SAYS THE YOUTH WILL RELATE TO PUSHTAINI
Vinod is certain that the youth will relate to Pushtaini and opines, “When it comes to the circle of life, people have seen the peak of technology and other developments. I feel everyone in today’s time wants to come back to the simple life. Sometimes I see videos of people who worked in Bangalore’s IT firms heading back to their roots and engaging in organic farming. They have started to understand the importance of simplicity. This is just a beginning. I could be possible that in the coming 20 years, there would be more disruption. Now, is the right time to fix things. A lot of people including me want change. I am definitely hopeful that this film will impact a lot of people who have been away from their roots.” The actor also opens up on Rajkummar Rao’s cameo in Pushtaini and states that, “Rajkummar Rao and I did theatre together in Delhi. I joined FTII an year after him. We share a close friendship as we used to be regularly involved in creative discussions and improvisations related to the craft. So, whenever he starts anything new or I work on any project, we discuss and share the same with each other. So, when I wrote the script of Pushtaini, I asked him about his views. He himself told me that he wanted to do the role. And when he comes to the set, he makes everyone comfortable and at ease, such is his aura. Its mind-blowing to see the growth of a person from Gurgaon to being so matured.”
VINOD RAWAT FEELS THIS IS THE BEST TIME FOR DIVERSE CINEMA WITH THE RISE OF OTT PLATFORMS
When questioned regarding the scope for movies like Pushtaini amid masala cinema like Gadar 2, Jawan and Leo, the actor-director opined, “I feel this is the best time when a lot of people like me are able to explore such kind of stories. A platform like MAMI film festival gave a lot of respect to our film by screening. I personally feel it’s a correct time to make such kind of movies. At the same time, I’m also a fan of masala cinema. I like making and watching such movies. So, there should be a balance between entertainment and serious content in films today. We need all kinds of genres.” He also admits that as a creative person he does not feel any pressure of Rs 100 Crore and points out, “I don’t feel any pressure. If we recall earlier independent films faced many challenges. But in today’s time there are so many platforms and festivals. Because completing a film is no less than winning a war. I don’t think any other country has so many opportunities for filmmakers, the way India has. Apart from OTT and festivals, social media is a great platform to promote your work. In Aaramnagar there are so many places where you can screen your films. So, there shouldn’t be just one thing that a film is not screened in a theatre, so it won’t get any recognition. Because there are a lot of places where you can actually showcase your movies.”
When asked about his advice to aspiring actors and filmmakers, Vinod says, “I just have one suggestion for them that please come after proper training. Be it NSD, FTII, Kerala Institute or SRFTI, there is a lot to learn for aspiring artists from these institutions. I’m not saying that those who don’t go to film school lack talent, but if you train at these institutes, then it will boost your self-confidence.”