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Don't lose heart, Aamir, Ashu!
Lagaan, directed by Ashutosh Gowariker, lost out to Bosnia's No Man's Land in the Best Foreign Film category on the night of March 24, in Los Angeles.
For the Hindi film industry, it is a sombre, yet positive moment. Some reactions:
Subhash Ghai [director]: It doesn't matter if we did not win the coveted Oscar. We must appreciate the Academy (of Motions Pictures Arts and Sciences) for selecting an Indian film for nomination. The good news is that the world is now watching Indian cinema.
This is just the beginning. The new generation would soon produce films taking into consideration international sensibilities. Hindi cinema is largely local cinema. It would take time for them to accept Indian sensibilities.
The fact that they are now coming to watch Indian cinema is a proud achievement for us.
Saeed Mirza [director]: Lagaan was a very good representative of what popular cinema is and it covered all the aspects. It had meaning, values, clarity and a social message. It is disturbing to see that the film did not win. But Ashutosh and Aamir should not be disheartened. There could be many reasons for the film not getting Oscar. Maybe the other film was good but it may not necessarily be true.
Lagaan is one of the finest films in the tradition of popular cinema. It is a cinema with heart, compassion and world view.
Anil Sharma [director] (of Gadar -- Ek Prem Katha 2001's biggest hit besides Lagaan): Lagaan defintely deserves top honours. It has proved that Indian films have the potential to make it big abroad.
Shyam Shroff [Shringar Films, distributor of Lagaan]: "I feel sad [that Lagaan did not win an Oscar]. Maybe the better film won the trophy. But for an Indian movie, the rave reviews that have been received abroad are certainly an achievement. It (Lagaan) was a beautiful film. Better luck next year.
A filmmaker [on condition of anonymity]: There is a need for us to introspect and study the filmmaking technique of great Hollywood producers and take a tip or two from their work.
Design: Uday Kuckian
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