Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Praise for Director's Big Screen Bollywood Debut

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Praise for Director's Big Screen Bollywood Debut

Article excerpt

Byline: Sonia Sharma Reporter

ATYNESIDE film director has had his dream come true after his debut Bollywood movie hit the big screens in India.

Shakirul Alam, who was born and brought up in Heaton, Newcastle, made a picture titled Teen Taal (Three Rhythms).

It was premiered at the Tyneside Cinema last year and also had special previews in the North East before Shakirul travelled to India this year to promote his work.

Then in June, it was released with PVR Cinemas, the largest multiplex chain in India. The film was screened across 10 multiplexes as well as smaller singleplex cinemas in a northern area covering Delhi and surrounding towns and cities.

Large posters went up in public places and a series of marketing events were held which attracted the attention of the local media. The film received a good response, with average review ratings of 4/5 stars.

The music for the film was released by the Crescendo team on top platforms such as iTunes and Saavn. Shakirul said: "We promoted the film at several live events, sometimes to over 3,000 or 4,000 people, with our actors and musicians performing our movie music live. The crowd response was brilliant.

"The film passed the official censor with flying colours, receiving a U certificate, without having to make a single cut before it was released. "The response was very good with audiences really connecting with the film. I went to a few public screenings secretly with the lead actor Gaurav Chowdhary, who is playing a double role in the film, and we were delighted to see audiences really engaged with it, even crying at emotional moments. A couple of the screenings ended with a big round of applause which felt amazing."

The 29-year-old, who went to Ravenswood Primary and Heaton Manor School, first started out as a pharmaceutical chemist, gaining a degree in the subject from Northumbria University.

However, he decided to give it all up and follow his dream of becoming a screenwriter and filmmaker.

He joined an acting academy, in London, founded by top Bollywood actor Anupam Kher. …

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