Gul Panag, who has always been known as a thinking ‘brains with beauty’ actress, loved Sartaj Singh Pannu’s debut film as writer, director and actor, SOCH LO (think about it), which releases on August 27, 2010. The actress, who got recognition for her offbeat films like MANORAMA – SIX FEET UNDER, DHOOP, DOR, RANN and STRAIGHT, met Sartaj Singh Pannu at the Indibloggers meet and didn’t miss the golden opportunity to see this much-talked about film, SOCH LO, and just loved it. In fact, her own film, Subhash Ghai-owned Mukta Arts’ comedy HELLO DARLING will be releasing on the same day but she praised Pannu’s film as being quite thought-provoking and offbeat.
At the Indibloggers meet, Sartaj made a presentation on the first ‘Indie’ film in India to upload its show reel on You Tube to accumulate funds for completion. The response was path breaking. Starting with US $400, the Producers raised funds of US$ 100,000 through You Tube, friends, acquaintances and full length cutting edge flick was ready. The theatrical and look of the film scheduled for August 27 has already created curiosity within the youth on social networking sites.
Gul said, “Sartaj is brave to venture into a territory that no one has done so far. Raising finances through the Internet for an unfinished film is quite a risk but he has successfully gone ahead with realizing his dream. I wish him all the best even though his film will be pitted against mine at the box office.”
Sartaj says, “The idea of SOCH LO was to make a student diploma film to showcase his talent. I wrote the script keeping with the aesthetics blending with a mainstream taste, yet new for Indian audience. Basically a contained script for a quickie film, the script got bigger in scale gradually in the process of writing and so did the dream but the budget remained the same.”
Talking about the obstacles, Pannu says, “It was like climbing Mount Everest!! When I look back I have no idea how this film got done. The odds that were overcome were nothing short of miraculous. It started with me wanting to test myself as to whether I am capable enough to be a filmmaker. The chances of me getting a break were not that much, because I don’t gel with the existing system of the Indian film industry. I was a man of limited means and actually had a strong sense of conviction….ironically an overdose of conviction is not always appreciated here. Having said that, I tried to get talent from NSD, FTII, etc since these were the people who have studied filmmaking, are passionate to start with and they have that fire in their belly like my DOP Sandeep Patil.”
The 7th script of the talented multifaceted personality, SOCH LO (Mirage) stars Pannu, Barkha Madan (a former Miss India finalist and actress), K. P. Nishan, Himanshu Kohli and a model, Iris Maity. It has been shot at Jaisalmer, Ganpati Phule and Mumbai. The core team of SOCH LO has 27 graduates (mostly rank fresher) from the Film and Television Institute of India (FTII) who have contributed in areas like acting, editing, music, sound and cinematography. Golden Globe Creations (GGC) will release the film in USA in Hindi and with English subtitles for mainstream American audience