I love the flexibility of Indian cinema: Oliver Stone

Mumbai, Oct 26 (Calcutta Tube) Academy Award winning Hollywood filmmaker Oliver Stone, who is currently working on a 12-hour documentary on US history, Tuesday said that he loved the flexibility of Indian cinema to switch from musicals to tragedies.

Stone landed here from Singapore to receive the Lifetime Achievement Award at the ongoing Mumbai Film Festival and to show his documentary ‘South of the Border’.

Addressing a press conference here, Stone said he had been in India many times.

‘In fact, the first shot of my film ‘Alexander’ was shot in Ladakh,’ he said.

Stone said that though he had studied the films of Satyajit Ray and liked them, over the years he had not been able to keep himself updated with what is happening in Indian cinema.

‘You are the most prolific industry. I cannot keep up. I can’t say I have any close understanding of it at all. However, I love the fact that you can switch from musical to romance to tragedy. I love that flexibility and that mentality,’ the ace director said.

The maker of films like ‘Nixon’, ‘JFK’ and ‘Wall Street’ criticised the US foreign policy in his characteristic way. ‘My films have always been against war and aggression. There is no justification for any war since the Second World War.’

Stone is working on a 12-hour Leftist documentary series called ‘The Untold History of the United States’. ‘There’s a whole history of this country which has been under-reported and which Americans have no clue about. The documentary has a Left-of-centre approach and there is a deliberate attempt to tell a story that is factual.’

Criticising Ronald Reagan’s free market policies of the 1980s, he said: ”Wall Street’ was made in 1987 during the height of Ronald Reagan’s free market policies. It went on till the ’90s and 2000 and a lot of people got richer, and others did not make anything. It was a horrible period that came to an end in 2008, I hope. There’s an economic volatility where we don’t know what’s gonna happen.’

Talking about the change that has come over his films, Stone said: ‘Life changes and so does a filmmaker. I try to change my style in every film.’

But he maintained that ‘story and screenplay would be the reason to make a movie’.

‘If you don’t have a good screenplay, don’t do it.’

Every film, Stone believes, comes with a destiny of its own. ‘And once a film comes out, it lasts and stays there.’

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