Will Rajkummar Rao and Hansal Mehta’s CityLights bring back Mahesh Bhatt’s form of cinema?

The Bhatt scion informed at a recent press event that he had had a big fight at his house as to whether or not to make CityLights. Read on to find out why…

Filmmaker Mahesh Bhatt, co-owner of Vishesh Films, says the film production company has given many hits like Raaz, Jism and Murder, but their forthcoming film Citylights will change its course. He said that he received a message from someone who appreciated the Hansal Mehta directorial and said that Vishesh Films will never be the same again.

“She even said that after Saaransh, this is the only movie that matches up. This is the kind of response I am getting. When people speak with this kind of passion about a film they have no expectation from, it means it just changed the course like after Zakhm, I took a sharp turn and made Murder, Raaz, Jism… people asked what happened to him…“Citylights has changed the narrative of Vishesh Films and I think it will bring back the legacy of my cinema…It’s the most natural thing for me to make the film. I’ve made Saaransh, Daddy, Zakhm…I was known for those kinds of films. It (Citylights) is going to change things for us. That’s why I am pining for the film’s success. The success of this film is very important,” he told reporters here.

Starring Rajkummar Rao and Patralekha, the movie is an adaptation of British film Metro Manila. It will hit approximately 400 screens Friday, but Mahesh believes the movie is already a hit. Made at a budget of less than Rs.6 crore (including production and marketing), it has already earned an impressive amount from satellite rights and music. “If it works, I will ask for more money to make such movies. If it doesn’t, which is quite impossible because it has to earn very less money… we can say that the film is a hit. Now, how big it will be only time will tell. Market will come if it’s very big hit. The revenue from satellite and music has been covered to some extent and now it is the profit that we need to know about,” he said.

Mahesh, who co-owns the production company with his brother Mukesh, said that he had to fight at his home to make Citylights. “I fought at home to make this film. It wasn’t easy to make the film. There were ideological differences. My brother doesn’t support this kind of cinema. He said we have earned so much and have been successful for years so, why this now. I said if you want to be alive you need to be on the edge and play,” said Mahesh. He believes that there is a need to keep fear alive – whether the movie will work or not – so that it reminds you that you are a human being and not god.