A record number of new Directors in 2010
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05/01/11  There were a whopping 35 debutant directors in 2010, namely Mudassar Aziz (Dulha Mil Gayaa), Jugal Hansraj (Pyaar Impossible), Amit Rai (Road To Sangam), Abhishek Choubey (Ishqiya), Kendar Shindre (To Baat Pakki), Vijay Lalvani (Kartik Calling Kartik), Irrfan Kamal (Thanks, Maa), Raja Unnithan (Hello Zindagi), Shawn Arranha (Hide N Seek), Neeraj Pathak (Right Ya Wrong), Sanjay Puran Singh (Lahore), Milap Jhaveri (Jaane Kahan Se Aayee Hai), Kookie Gulati (Prince It's Showtime), Milind Gadgkar (Phoonk2), Milin Ukey (Paathshala), Parmeet Sethi (Badmaash Company), Punit Malhotra (I Hate Luv Storys), Vikramaditya Motwane (Udaan), Abhishek Sharma (Tere Bin Laden), Rajshree Ojha (Aisha), Anusha Rizvi (Peepli Live), Antardwand (Sushil Rajpal), Jai Tank (Madholal…Keep Walking), Akshay Shere (Emotional Atyaachaar), Siddharth Malhotra (We Are Family), Abhinav Kashyap (Dabangg), Sona Jain (For Real), Aaatish Kapadia (Khichdi), Habib Faizal (Do Dooni Char), Bela Nagi (Dayen Ya Bayen), Sanjay Sharma (Dunno Y…Na Jaane Kyon), Faruk Kabir (Allah Kay Banday), Danish Aslam (Break Ke Baad), Maneesh Sharma (Band Baaja Baaraati), Subhash Kapoor (Phans Gaye Re Obama) and Kireet Khurana (Tunpoor Ka Superhero)

Many of these are, alas, one-film wonders. But some of the debutant directors made a reverberant impact. Here's looking at those who mattered.

Amit Rai:

Film: Road To Sangam

USP: A gentle nostalgic look at a true-life incident in the life of a Gandhian who craves only to take Gandhiji's ashes into the Ganga, it had an endearing central performance by Paresh Rawal and an authentic feel to the goings on

Downer: Who cares about Gandhian philosophy any more?

Future: Not-So-Bright. Amit Rai may have a nproblem making a more contemporary film.

Abhishek Choubey

Film: Ishqiya

USP: Delicious delightful erotic look at a scheming seductive woman Vidya Balan's sexual manipulation of a Uncle- Nephew pair. Great impact. Terrific music by the Gulzar-Vishal Bharadwaj combination.

Future: Bright. Audiences loved Abhishek's tangy-and-spicy cinema. Besides he has the redoubtable Vishal Bhardwaj as mentor.

Irrfan Kamal

Film: Thanks, Maa

USP: A gritty, honest look at the life of street kids …Natural performances, engaging plot.

Downer: Everyone thought Irrfan was echoing Slumdog Millionaire

Future: Dim. No one bothered with Irrfan's film. Thanks, but no thanks.

Punit Malhotra

Film: I Hate Luv Storys

USP: Youthful buoyant take on the love triangle set in a world that Punit knows well. (He's Manish Malhotra's nephew).

Downer: Shallow characters predictable lines, too cool to be real

Future: Bright. Karan Johar is the producer.

Vikarmditya Motwane

Film: Udaan

USP: Tremendous sensitivity and native intelligence compounded by a linear straight-from-the-hip storytelling that left us bowled over.

Downer: Seems autobiographical. So what next?

Future: Bright. Producer Anurag Kashyap has taken a shine to him.

Abhishek Sharma:

Film: Tere Bin Laden

USP: Fiercely original comedy with a message on world peace. Done with a tongue-in-cheek relish

Downer: Can Abhishek work on big budgets. Can he make films that don't take a lighter look at life?

Future: Has possibilities. Let's see.

Anusha Rizvi:

Film: Peepli (Live)

USP: Took a look at wretched poverty without sentimentality. Gave a terrific account of life at the grassroots. Also had the guts to take on producer Aamir Khan.

Future: Uncertain. Aamir se panga nahin lene ka.

Susheel Rajpal

Film: Antardwand

USP: Took a look at the dowry menace and groom-kidnapping tradition in Bihar while telling a story that had dramatic potential

Downer: Too provinicial in his vision.

Future: Dim

Siddharth Malhotra

Film: We Are Family

USP: For a first-timer Siddharth directed two screen queens Kajol and Kareena with aplomb.

Downer: Unoriginal. Remake of a schmaltzy Hollywood film.

Future: Fairly bright. He's Karan Johar's boy

Abhinav Kashyap

Film: Dabangg

USP: Rustic mega-hit, brought the house down

Downer: Said to be ghost-directed by Salman Khan

Future: Very bright. Salman's ghost notwithstanding, is reportedly asking for Rs 12 crores for next film.

Habib Faizal:

Film: Do Dooni Chaar

USP: A sincerely heartwarming look at a middleclass family in Delhi, Rishi Kapoor and Neetu Singh were gloriously endearing.

Downer: Intimate, chamber-piece. Too Delhi-oriented.

Future: Reasonably bright.

Faruk Kabir

Film Allah Kay Banday

USP: Edgy street-wise look and feel to the narrative. Focussed on the plight of juvenile criminals

Downer: Nothing really new to tell.

Future: Bright. Knows the commercial language.

Maneesh Sharma

Film: Band Baaja Baaraat

USP: Surprise hit of the year, A terrific idea splendidly executed with fantastic dialogues and credible performances.

Downer: None

Future: Very bright

Subhash Kapoor

Film: Phans Gaye Re Obama

USP: A thoroughly entertaining look at the kidnapping industry. Absolutely original and totally fearless about the boxoffice yet entertaining and genuinely funny

Downer: Sometimes too clever for its own good.

Future: Depends on whether Kapoor can go beyond the dynamics of a political satire.
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