Bombay, February 7
Bollywood actor Sanjay Dutt launches production company Three Dimension Motion Pictures in a bid to bring back the golden age of heroism in the industry.
Sanjay cites the recent pan-Indian box office success of South Indian film “Pushpa” and the films of “Baahubali” filmmaker SS Rajamouli as examples of the larger-than-life heroism that is missing in Bollywood, variety.com reports.
“We’re trying to reclaim what we had, what South Indian movies are doing now,” Dutt told Variety.
“When we entered the film industry, we started with heroism, heroic roles, mass love and everything, and I saw that stop. And I’m trying to revive that. ” Sanjay made his debut with “Rocky” in 1981, at a time when the leading men of mainstream Indian cinema were written as a full heroic ensemble. Today, this genre in the Hindi film industry has shrunk to a niche, or a “little hole” as Dutt describes it.
“What Denzel Washington, Kevin Costner and Mel Gibson are doing in Hollywood, I think there’s a little gap missing here. I’m trying to reclaim that gap, from a hero of this age, who can play and who can fight and who can stand up for their rights,” the actor said.
“The Golden Age – it just can’t die. Even if you look at Hollywood, it exists there, and in the South. I don’t know what happened to Bollywood. But that’s what we are trying to recover – those days of heroism,” he added.
Three Dimension is preparing a slate that includes horror-comedy “The Virgin Tree,” which will be directed by Sidhaant Sachdev, who has experience in television, music video and assistance and will make his feature film debut , with a cast of four newcomers.
Principal photography begins in May.
The rest of the list is yet to be titled, but includes family drama, action movies with younger actors, and other action movies with a mature man as the hero.
“I won’t play in all of them, but in some of them,” says Dutt.
“I would like to relax as a producer, after 40 years in the industry – to be on the sets on the other side. It will be an experience for me, I have never been in this chair before. I’ I can’t wait to be there.”
While the Three Dimension slate also includes series for streaming platforms, the films are all intended for theatrical release. “I believe in the big screen – I know it can never be extinguished. I know OTT (streaming) is a huge part of cinema today. But I know cinemas will eventually open up and that there will be movies just for theaters,” Dutt said.
The actor blames the vanished heroism of Bollywood squarely on the costumes.
“I feel like this whole corporate structure encroaching on our space in Bollywood has ruined everything.
“Because these guys who sit on the table and give money have no right to interfere with the director for his creation, nor with the actors or to give their opinion on a content or a scenario, when [they] have no idea, and it’s none of their business,” the actor said.
“Their business is the financing and that’s where the business ends. But once you start interfering in the script and in the direction and in the budgets and this and that, then things get messy, and that’s it. That’s why I think we lost a lot of good things during this time,” Dutt adds.
“Whereas in the South, this corporate structure does not exist. From the producer to the director, including all the people involved in the team, they are passionate about making good films and that is what has worked for them.”
“And that went against us because that passion to make movies or that passion to do something big and work and play is gone. Which I think will come back. At least in my business, it will come back. “
As an actor, Dutt has several films delayed due to Covid, including the historical ‘Prithviraj’ alongside Akshay Kumar, the period action drama ‘Shamshera’ with Ranbir Kapoor and the crime drama ‘KGF : Chapter 2’, the sequel to the 2018 Kannada-language film that became a pan-Indian blockbuster.
Dutt’s own life was colorful enough to be adapted as a Bollywood film. A popular actor from the 1980s to the present day, he has also gone through a period of drug addiction, endured multiple bereavements and overcome cancer.
From 1993 to 2016, Dutt went in and out of prison for possessing weapons during the 1993 Bombay bombings.
“I served time in prison and got out. Then I was welcomed by the film industry, which is like family to me and it’s always been great how they supported me,” Dutt said.
“And then it was this phase of cancer, which I also came out of. I’m doing great now.”
While the actor had a string of hits behind him, Rajkumar Hirani’s ‘Munna Bhai MBBS’ and its sequel ‘Lage Raho Munna Bhai’, produced by Vidhu Vinod Chopra, endeared Dutt to a whole new generation of fans.
Dutt says he asked Hirani and Chopra several times about Part Three and suggested that since he and Warsi are now older, the script reflects that.
“They are thinking and God willing it will happen,” Dutt says.
When asked if Three Dimension would be the logical home for a streaming series about Dutt’s life, he replied, “You put that seed in my head, I’ll think about it now.”