One can say Bollywood is divided into two: commercial cinema and its more artistic cousin, the indie film. However, some directors straddle both camps. Their films lie somewhere in between, and they’re fine with their kind of cinema not having a name. Madhur Bhandarkar is one of them.
Coming to the fore with the critically acclaimed and four National Awards-winning Chandni Bar, starring the powerhouse Tabu, Madhur claims he chooses to — or at least strives to — make films that “hold up a mirror to society”.
From Chandni Bar to the Konkona Sen Sharma-starrer Page 3 that exposed the relationship between the media and high society or the Priyanka Chopra-starrer Fashion chronicling the journey of an aspiring model to supermodel-dom, Madhur has made a name for himself by tackling offbeat subjects. And his long list of national and international awards is a testament to that.
“It [has been my] conscious decision to make such films. I’ve always said I’m not a commercial filmmaker. I’m basically a slice-of-life filmmaker. I don’t want to take a chance with commercial cinema, cast superstars, add five songs, etc. I don’t do that. For 14 years I’ve been successful making my kind of cinema,” said the filmmaker in an exclusive interview with Images.