Filmmaker Prakash Jha was in for a pleasant surprise when the short film titled Highway Nights that features him was shortlisted for selection by the Academy Awards. “I am not aware of their criteria. I am myself surprised,” exclaims Jha when asked if he feels socially relevant films are more likely to get chosen or bag a nomination.
“It’ll be nice if our short film gets the recognition it deserves,” says Jha, adding, “The story conceptualised by director Shubham Singh was amazing. He carried it so well. The only reason I agreed to do the film was because of the well-written script. I followed the director’s vision, and I am glad the film got shortlisted for the Academy Awards consideration.”
Jha big news
Jha shared the big news on Instagram revealing that the jury voting will begin soon. The story of Highway Nights revolves around how an elderly truck driver played by Jha who forms an unusual bond with a young sex worker played Mazel Vyas. The movie has also travelled to a few film festivals in the past.
The director of Highway Nights, Singh sheds light on why he roped in the 70-year-old director for the role. “There is no comparison when it comes to Prakash sir, as he is a veteran in filmmaking. I loved his raw character that he played in Saand Ki Aankh (2019) and it was that role that made me approach the director. He immediately agreed to it after listening the narration,” he shares.
On why it’s imperative for Indian films to get recognition on the global stage, Singh asserts it motivates more and more filmmakers back home. “Indian films getting recognition overseas will eventually encourage more Indian filmmakers to come forward to tell their unseen and unheard stories. I just hope Highway Nights makes it to the Academy nods, and the jury likes the content we have produced,” he ends.
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