Small town stories finding wider acceptance: 'Kanpuriye' director Ashish Aryan

Bedika K

New Delhi, Nov 10 (PTI) 'Kanpuriye' director Ashish Aryan says metro cities have dominated Hindi films for a long time but now stories from smaller towns are finding acceptance among viewers.

Written and directed by Ashish, the Yoodlee Films' 'Kanpuriye' revolves around the characters of Divyendu Sharma, Aparshakti Khurana, Harsh Mayar -- all dreaming to make it big in life while grappling with life in Kanpur.

Vijay Raaz, Rajshri Deshpande, Harshita Gaur and Rohit Chaudhary also form the cast of this Hotstar original film.

In 2005, Shaad Ali shot a few scenes of his hit film 'Bunty aur Babli' in Kanpur, which later became the backdrop of Hindi film such as 'Tanu Weds Manu' franchise, Salman Khan-starrer 'Dabangg 2', popular TV show 'Bhabhi ji Ghar Pe Hain' and Ayushman Khurrana-starrer 'Bala'.

Asked about the marked shift among filmmakers moving the base of their films from Mumbai or Delhi to cities like Kanpur, Lucknow or Bhopal, Ashish credits it to the 'realistic stories' from these places which are now finding viewership across platforms.

'The conventional Hindi cinema showed that dreams always come true but growing up in Kanpur, I never saw it happening to people around me. Most of them wanted to be film stars but 99 per cent of them are now leading a common, ordinary life but most importantly they are content with it. These stories tell us that the show must go on even if dreams don't come true. That's the spirit of small towns,' the director told PTI.

'There have been several realistic films in last 10 years which have been shot at real locations and not in studios as against the previous 70 years. These are stories of ordinary people and small towns, which have given us many characters that are now finding acceptance in metros also. Good content finds its viewership, be it in theatres or OTT platforms,' he says.

Ashish said the characters of his film are inspired by real life people, including Vijay Raaz's 'Lampat Harami' -- based on Rampat Harami, popular for his double-meaning jokes and gigs in Kanpur.

Rajshri Deshpande, who featured in Netflix's 'Sacred Games', plays 'Kohinoor' and is the only female member of Lampat's troop. 'Kanpuriye' streams on Hotstar. PTI KIS BKBK