Today marks the birthday of celebrated filmmaker Mostofa Sarwar Farooki. In a candid conversation with The Daily Star, the internationally acclaimed director shares some of his special memories of his previous birthdays, and talks about his upcoming projects.
How do you generally spend your birthday?
We did not have birthday celebrations in my childhood. However, now I generally start my birthday mornings guessing what surprise Tisha might come up with this time -- much like when a schoolboy awaits his coveted chocolate box!
I am sorry for failing to make myself sound intellectual in this regard. Truth be told, our life is insignificant anyway. I think these little things make it significant. Birthdays are just an excuse, but the love I can feel through all these wishes and gifts make me feel happy and alive!
Would you like to share any of the surprises you received over the years?
The biggest surprise Tisha gave me so far, was when I was shooting a commercial in Cox's Bazaar a few years ago. Since I did not want to celebrate my birthday without her, I was pushing her to come to Cox's Bazaar for a day.
She was saying that it is not possible, as she had a shoot too around that time. On my birthday, I was shooting a scene at the beach. All of a sudden, I could see an object landing in my frame. I looked closely, and found out it's a helicopter -- I was extremely livid to see my shot being ruined.
I was screaming and yelling at my production team, I asked them to find out why a chopper had landed on the beach, and that too in my frame. Once the chopper stopped, I saw Tisha coming out of it and running straight to me! She organized this whole drama with the help of my unit!
If you had one wish that could come true today, what would it be and why?
I would love to be invisible. For too long, we have been forced to live a life whose boundaries have been set by history. For too long, we have carried the baggage of it. By being invisible, I think I can live a life the way I wish to without bothering about what history, politics, norms, values, or system asks from me. However, obviously I would not love to be nonexistent. Only people who love me would feel my presence.
Satyajit Ray and you are birthday twins! Is there anything you want to say about him on this day?
I see nothing other than sheer coincidence here. A sweet coincidence nonetheless, although sometimes it gets a little embarrassing for me.
I got exposed to the cinemas of Bresson, Tarkovsky, Goddard, Kurosawa or Ray pretty late, as we did not have a television at home. I remember watching a whole session in high school, where they screened a number of his films. One film that stayed with me was "Kanchenjunga" one of his lesser-known work but my most favorite of his films.
What project/s are you currently busy with?
I am currently busy with the post production of my first web series. We recently completed our shoot, and I am super excited about this project. The title, cast, and other details of the project will be shared with everyone soon.
At the same time, I am also waiting to complete the postproduction work of my film "No Land's Man". This is a film that I can't wait to show to the world. However, since the postproduction of the film requires a lot of traveling abroad, it has suffered massively due to pandemic. Let us hope we can finish it soon.