Actor-filmmaker Mahesh Manjrekar feels there is a sudden awareness amongst Bollywood celebrities regarding Marathi cinema but hopes they come up with something new and not what works for them in the Hindi film industry.
The “Natsamrat” director says after the wide spread success of Marathi films in the recent past, everybody wants to “jump on the bandwagon.”
“Priyanka Chopra has produced a Marathi film. Even John Abraham announced he is wanting to make a Marathi film. Suddenly everyone wants to jump on the bandwagon. Shah Rukh, Rohit Shetty also want to do a Marathi film. There is an awareness. But I hope they don’t come and spoil the market by making their kind of cinema,” Manjrekar said. The filmmaker was speaking at Mumbai Press Club’s Knowledge Series, on ‘Makeover of Marathi Cinema’, last evening. Manjrekar feels the real change started to happen with films like, “Duniyadari” and “Me Shivajiraje Bhosale Boltoy”, prior to which Hindi film industry never even bothered about Marathi cinema.
“Till about 4-5 years back, hindi cinema never considered Marathi films as a threat or a business proposition. Suddenly after Duniyadari, ‘Me Shivajiraje Bhosale Boltoy’, they realised that there is an audience. Now what happens is, they want to make the same films they have made in Hindi here. They made ‘No Entry’ in Marathi when there was no need. It’s as it is a mediocre film. They feel ‘we will teach the marathi audience what cinema is’. They were rejected outright.”
The actor feels the industry “needs one Marathi film to be a hit internationally” so that more doors will be open in the overseas territory. Manjrekar is now gearing up for his next, “Dhyani Mani” to have a world wide release on February 10.