Swara Bhaskar: Madholal Keep Walking Shot in the real Mumbai of suburban trains and chawls

New Delhi, Aug 22 (Calcutta Tube) Shot in the real Mumbai of suburban trains and chawls and based on true life instances, ‘Madholal Keep Walking‘ is a tribute to the undying spirit of the Maximum City and its people, says Swara Bhaskar, who makes her acting debut with the film.

‘ ‘Madholal…’ is about a microcosm of people who inhabit a close-knit world and how they deal with tragedies. It is a story of a whole group of people,’ Swara told IANS over the phone from Mumbai.

‘It is set in the contemporary world and is shot at live locations like local trains in Bombay which is also a running metaphor for the film. It was shot in a chawl before it was demolished by a builder.

‘The film also captures the disappearing landscapes of Bombay. We got a lot of candid shots of the city. There were no sets. It is a universal story but is rooted in Bombay. It celebrates Bombay and the never-give-up spirit of the people in the city,’ added the 25-year-old.

Releasing Aug 27, ‘Madholal Keep Walking’ is the directorial debut of Apurva Tank who has also co-produced it with Jai Tank. The movie also stars Subrat Dutta, Neela Gokhale, Pranay Narayan and Varnita Aglawe.

Disclosing some details about the content of the film, Swara said: ‘Madholal (the protagonist) meets a certain tragedy and goes through trauma but he still overcomes it. It is about the success of the human spirit.’

The Delhi girl, who moved to Mumbai three years ago, plays Madholal’s daughter Sudha.

‘Sudha is educated but is very down-to-earth and very real in her approach. She has a very happy and comfortable life. She has her own little world, but when tragedy strikes her family, she has to rise to the occasion and step into her father’s shoes.’

Before its commercial release, the film travelled to film festivals across the globe and earned critical acclaim at places like Cairo, Sao Paulo, Atlanta, Singapore and Calgary.

Swara says ‘Madholal…’ is her first release, but ‘Niyati’ was her debut film.

‘This is my second film, but the first that will release. My first film is an independent art cinema called ‘Niyati’ (releasing in November),’ she said.

She admits to being nervous.

‘I am quite scared. Though I have travelled with the film to different festivals and got good response, I am quite nervous. But I am also very happy. It has been a long wait… I am proud of the movie,’ she said.

Before entering films, Swara was associated with N.K. Sharma’s Act One Theatre group in the capital. She has done ads for brands like Bajaj Life Insurance, Berger Paints and Lava Mobiles and also featured in the music video of Roop Kumar Rathod’s title track ‘Saawarey’ from his album ‘Teri Justajoo’.

A graduate from Miranda House, with a masters in sociology from the Jawaharlal Nehru University, she is also a trained bharatanatyam dancer.

Having role models like Madhur Dixit, Rani Mukerji and Julia Roberts, Swara is now ‘dying to do a typical song and dance Hindi movie’.

Swara’s other future projects include ‘Tanu Weds Manu’ and an untitled women-oriented film with Arjun Bagga.

(Robin Bansal can be contacted at robin.b@ians.in)

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