NEW DELHI: Hansal Mehta has been busy gearing up for the release of his forthcoming film Aligarh, which opened in Indian cinema houses on Friday. Speaking at a press conference, Mehta revealed that its storyline is based on the real life incident of Aligarh Muslim University (AMU) academician Shrinivas Ramchandra Siras, who was suspended from his job on account of his sexual orientation.
“We take things too simplistically,” Mehta said, speaking with IANS. “The truth is, the film is a portrait of loneliness. The loneliness has been imposed upon the man because of society’s invasive tendencies, because society decided to invade his private space,” he added. Mehta went on to say that his journey with Aligarh – which stars Manoj Bajpai as Siras – has been great. “My journey has been wonderful, the film has been appreciated,” he claimed. “People have responded to the character and issues it is raising. I hope that when people come to watch the film, they examine their own prejudices.”
This week, the cast of Aligarh has been engaged in a novel marketing idea which saw Mehta, Bajpai and fellow lead actor, Rajkumar Rao, holding up its posters on the streets of Mumbai to avoid littering. According to Mehta, it was “basic civic sense” that sparked the idea. “It simplifies the marketing of the film and matches it with our civic responsibility,” he explained.
Mehta is already gearing up to work on his next offering Simran, which will star actor Kangana Ranaut in the lead role. “I am beginning Simran with Kangana soon after she is done shooting for Rangoon,” he said, without divulging any further details regarding its script or Kangana’s role.
Published in The Express Tribune, February 27th, 2016.