Posted on September 3, 2016
This April, at this event, I was invited to converse with Mahesh Bhatt about Smita Patil. It took a while, but the video is finally here.
Really enjoyed the conversation. Hope you do too.
September 3, 2016
What a lovely conversation! So much insight.. He is such a refreshingly honest man.. I really like how intuitively he seems to grasp the essence of people.. an immensely important trait for a story teller.. I wish he would translate his thoughts into better movies now though.. a man with so much creative energy (even the words he uses are so exuberant) has to have some more good films up his sleeve..
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September 4, 2016
The conversation is great , the video of it seems to jump as if portions of it have been edited out.
I thought this was simply a live capture.
September 5, 2016
Mahesh Bhatt is an interesting conversationalist, and a very, very intelligent one. Before he started bloviating on everything under the sun, and saying things designed to shock, he was possibly the most honest of the film folk, and he had no problem calling a spade a shovel. He’s also mined his personal life, exploiting other people’s (including his father’s) pain to make his ‘autobiographical’ movies.
I enjoyed the conversation, nevertheless. He is, first and foremost, a story-teller, and I liked the way he talked about Smita, not hiding his own frailties in the process. Thanks, BR.
p.s. Going back to my original screen name, since there appears to be a namesake in the comments. 🙂
September 7, 2016
I wish he kept his answers more crisper. I am fine with ramblings. They make it interesting. But he is rambling too much (to the point where I kind of have a distrust of what he is saying. I hate when people keep talking about themselves when asked about other person. The “Kamal hassan” syndrome 🙂 I think )
I wish you were given opportunity to ask more questions.
I loved how you asked to compare Shabana with Smita and he gave a very good answer (about Tehzeeb etc)
Smita Patil would have been wonderful (very intelligent and can emote that intelligence without being artificial or sounding preachy)
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@sridharvasu76 ROFLOL @Kamalhassan syndrome
But yes, the guy talks a lot. A lot more than needed and sounded bombastic.
September 8, 2016
I don’t think Mahesh Bhatt was the right person to comment about Smita Patil, it would be Shyam Benegal. The bhumika poster in the background is a testament of that. Bhumika is her greatest performance IMO. It was perfect for her skills as a performer – edgy , volcanic ,powerful. the scenes were she go head to head with Amrish puri was electrifying ( btw very few actresses have survived going toe to toe with Amrish puri). I dont think any other indian actress could have played that role as well as Smita , not even shabhana.
Arth was more Shabana’s film than Smita’s. Rohini Hattangadi had an even important character than smita’s in the film. Smita had every right to be pissed at Bhatt. her role was more of an extended cameo. Shabhana owned the film all the way. what a performance – So nuanced and subtle- and for which she rightfully earned the national awrd. .
Also the best pairing of Shabana and smita is in Mandi. those 2 great performances . it was like watching Brando and Pacino in The Godfather
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He’s also mined his personal life, exploiting other people’s (including his father’s) pain to make his ‘autobiographical’ movies.
Anu,That’s what has concerned me too . Mahesh Bhatt was a really good filmmaker for a long period of time in his career and his best films have all been the ones where he has used his personal life stories . But its one thing to bring your personal experiences to making a film- all great filmmakers do that- , but to put the exact portrait of your father, mother or your mistress on the screen with no concern for their personal feelings or privacy, i dont know how morally or ethically correct is that.
It is fun to hear him say things like – there is no charm in washing your dirty laundry in the backyard – but its not just his dirty laundry he’s washing.. Parveen babi was alive and still having an active career in movies when he made the film. what about the love and trust she placed in him .
MANK, his father had gone on record after Janam to express his grief at his story being exploited in such a fashion. (As well as to object to the falsification of certain details.) Parveen was already prone to depression; when Arth released, it pushed her over the edge. In my opinion, Mahesh Bhatt was at least partly responsible for her descend into the madness that eventually took her life. All I can say is that he’s truly one of the most amoral men I’ve met. Not immoral, but amoral.
Anu, it happened after Zakham too.Bhatts father had to write a letter to a national daily clarifying several distortions in the film made against his family background
I can only imagine the effect Arth must have had on Parveen. It would drive even a sane person to insanity to see their personal life laid bare out there for public consumption , and she was already suffering from schizophrenia
Funny thing is that Bhatt’s nephew Vikram Bhatt also made a film about his extra marital affair with sushmita sen . I guess the whole Bhatt camp is nuts😃
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