The Brittle Thread is set in Varanasi and it follows the story of an orchestra dancer Rani (Megha Mathur) and handloom weaver Shahdab (Muzaffar Khan) and explores the love and hate dimensions in the ancient city of Varanasi, their cultural and political identities come to the fore.
It has been a long journey for filmmaker Ritesh Sharma — from conceptualising his debut feature film The Brittle Thread, to finally seeing it get its world premiere at the 34th Tokyo International Film Festival.
“My film is only film from India in Asian Future Section. There is another film Churuli by Lijo Jose Pellissery from India in the Gala Section. They select 10 from Asia. I finished this film in April and I send it for Tokyo and Busan and I finally got into Tokyo,” shares an elated Sharma.
He tells us that he got the idea for the film in 2015 when he was in Varanasi where the film is set. It follows the story of an orchestra dancer Rani (Megha Mathur) and handloom weaver Shahdab (Muzaffar Khan). The film explores the love and hate dimensions in the ancient city of Varanasi, their cultural and political identities come to the fore.
Sharma says that making this film was indeed like brining a baby to this world. “It has been one of the most beautiful journey especially when it is an independent film… you are everything, the dad and mom to this child you are bringing to the world. I got this idea in 2015 when I was in Varanasi. Then in 2017, I locked the script and my journey to be a producer began. The film is very different from what we see in mainstream cinema but now with the digital worlds, there is acceptance,” he shares.
Admitting that it us “very tough to make a film that has some political angle, in India”, he reveals, “Many people backed away, but then in 2018, we finally decided to go for it”.
Known for his documentary film The Holy Wives (2010) , Sharma now wants to see the audience’s reaction to the film when it premieres next month.
“I just want the world to see the film. I won’t be able to travel to Tokyo because of the pandemic. I would be part of online panels and discussions. I really want to say that there is international approach in the film. I want to send the film to as many festivals as possible. I really want this film to release in theatres in India. Let’s see how things are in this situation,” he concludes.