Indian cinema is more than a song-and-dance routine: Karan Johar

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BERLIN: The pure misconception in the global circuit that Indian films are mostly a song-and-dance routine hinders their growth internationally according to filmmaker and director Karan Johar.

Citing examples of acclaimed movies such as Toilet: Ek Prem Katha, PadMan and Bareilly Ki Barfi, the 45-year-old filmmaker said that Indian films have much more to offer than the “cliched sequences”.

“I feel very sad when I still see people across the globe having this misconception about Indian cinema that it is all about song and dance. This stereotypical view about our films can only be changed when we as part of the entertainment industry go out and tell people that we have much more to offer in terms of storytelling and content than just actors dancing around trees,” Johar remarked.

Karan, who is currently in Berlin to attend Berlinale 2018, further said, “India cinema is a victim of misconceptions on global stage. The way Aamir’s (Khan) films have been performing in China proves that we can make a huge mark globally. But only dialogue initiated by our filmmakers and actors can bring about this change.”

The director is in Germany, heading an Indian delegation to Berlinale 2018. The team, comprising film personalities such as Vani Tripathi, Bhumi Pednekar, Jahnu Barua and Shaji Karun, has been selected and sent to participate in the European Film Market by the Ministry of Information & Broadcasting in partnership with Confederation of Indian Industry.

A post shared by Karan Johar (@karanjohar) on Feb 16, 2018 at 10:31am PST

A post shared by Bhumi Pednekar (@psbhumi) on Feb 17, 2018 at 5:50am PST

Karan said such initiatives by the central government are commendable and will “surely contribute a lot in the growth of Indian entertainment industry”.

The director, who in the recent past has produced and presented films like Baahubali and The Lunchbox, said people often get surprised by the choices he makes as director and a producer-presenter, but in both the cases his aim is to back the content which has world language.

“I am all about content. All I am doing as a producer is looking at films which have world language. It is about picking films that speak the global language and that can only happen when the content appeals to the masses superseding the language barrier. It is not necessary that films I make will coincide with the kind of films I produce or present. My process as a director is mine and mine alone and I do what I am convinced with as a storyteller. But that doesn’t mean I am not open to global possibilities of films that I would like to present and produce.”

“The idea is always to take giant leaps for the development of Indian cinema,” he commented.