Interview of Sanjay Surkar, Director

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Interview by Sandeep © MMW


Sanjay Surkar is known for his realistic, hardhitting movies on social problems. His films like ‘Saatchya Aat Gharat’, ‘Aapli Manse’, ‘Chaukat Raja’ etc have been critically lauded. His latest film is ‘Sukhaant’ based on the controversial problem of euthanasia or mercy killing. We spoke to Sanjay about his new film. Here are some excerpts.

Sanjay Surkar

How did you think of making a film on euthanasia?
I had been to a friend’s house and he was really troubled by the state of his elderly mother who was comatose for the last eleven years. His predicament really troubled me and I did research on the net regarding euthanasia or mercy killing which is being considered by many law makers but still has not been implemented.

Your casting of Jyoti Chandekar as the old paralyzed woman requesting her son Atul Kulkarni for moving court to grant her wish of mercy killing is a powerful performance. How did you manage this?
I didn’t know Jyoti that well nor have I seen her plays or serials or films. But I didn’t need a
star or a known face for the role of the old woman. I needed an actor who would look rustic and speak the rustic lingo. She would come to me from now and then for a role and this time I did offer her the all important role of the paralyzed woman who wants to die with dignity and without troubling her dear ones.

How did you cast Atul Kulkarni as the son grieving for his mother?
I needed a face who is though a lawyer but would look village bred. And Atul Kulkarni is a powerful performer as is the performance in ‘Sukhaant’.

The climax of your film where the son kills his beloved mother is very bold.
Yes. But it is a climax that I have written. People might not agree with me but they are entitled to their views like Tushar Dalvi who plays a conscientious doctor who opines that mercy killing is agreeable to the heart but not the mind.

The old lady’s daughter in law played by Kavita Lad Medhekar looks after the helpless old lady very well. Doesn’t it seem a bit far-fetched?
No. I have actually seen my friend’s wife taking good care of her mother and I have based Kavita’s character on that.

How optimistic are you about the box-office prospects of the film?
The film is not aimed at the box-office and if people like it and see the film I will be satisfied. I am thankful to the producer Anuya Mhaiskar who was one of the many producers I had approached with this script.

What next?
I am shooting a thriller right now with Subodh Bhave in the lead. My film ‘Ek Daav Sansaracha’ starring Sandeep Kulkarni and Sarika Nilatkar is doing the festival circuit rounds and will release soon.

User's Comments
Suman | Fri, Nov 20, 2009 at 10:29 AM
The movie must b good. Atul kulkarni wil b great to watch.. but some scenes in most of the sanjay surkar movies r too unrealistic n extreme...the direction is good usually
Namita | Sun, Oct 25, 2009 at 5:01 PM
Sanjay Sukar's Movies are always special.
Sanjayji, I saw almost all movies till ek daav sansaracha.. you are really do good job. Your movie's subjects are always heart touching...