Often, mainstream commercial films emerge as the biggest hits of the year while experimental and arthouse films struggle to find an audience. But if the latter category of films scores at the box office, it can provide a huge boost to the ecosystem. Producer Shariq Patel of Zee Studios spoke about this aspect at the screening of his film Kennedy at the Jio MAMI Mumbai Film Festival 2023. The thriller is directed by Anurag Kashyap and it stars Rahul Bhat and Sunny Leone.Shariq Patel of Zee Studios requests the audience to support Anurag Kashyap’s Kennedy in theatres: “If Oppenheimer can do Rs. 150 crores in India, it means we have enough cinephiles”
Shariq joined the director and the actors after the film’s screening where he spoke about how he came on board. He also thanked the audience for staying for the Q-and-A session, which took place after 10:00 pm.
Shariq Patel said, “We came on board right at the beginning. That was 2 years ago. During the first meeting, we said that we were on. Then, we discussed the commercials. We are extremely proud and happy that we are associated with Kennedy. Thank you everyone for coming and staying so late.”
When asked when it’ll be released, Shariq revealed, “Looking at the fantastic response, we’ll release it theatrically. If Oppenheimer (2023) can do Rs. 150 crores in India, it means we have enough cinephiles. We need our festival films to get some support. We’d like you (pointing to the audience) to promote it and become the first brand ambassador for this movie. We plan to release the film in the coming month. We don’t have a date yet.”
He added, “If these films don’t work in the theatres, then the flow of the money stops. If you want Anurag to make more films, you need to support him in the theatre.”
Anurag Kashyap was the star of the evening. He was spotted before the screening near the stage when he was making the arrangements for the screening. As soon as he was spotted, the crowd cheered for him, prompting him to run backstage! After the screening, when he came on stage, there was another huge round of applause and even a standing ovation by some for the much-loved filmmaker.
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