Imtiaz Ali Reflects on His Latest Film and Creative Journey

Reported by Riya Garg


Imtiaz Ali, renowned for hits like “Jab We Met” and “Rockstar, recently visited Lucknow for an event. He spoke with us about his new filmChamkila” and the influence of real-life experiences on his storytelling.


Women in Film: Resilient and Intelligent

Imtiaz has a reputation for creating strong female characters. He believes women possess greater intelligence and resilience, which he aspires to reflect in his films. While his male characters often struggle, his female characters rise to the occasion. “It’s not just from personal experience,” he says. “I want to see women doing more in society, and that shows in my films.


Navigating Success and Failure

Imtiaz faced criticism when his recent films “Love Aaj Kal” (2020) and “When Harry Met Sejal” (2017) didn’t perform well at the box office. However, he remains unfazed. “Not all films are hits, and that’s part of the journey,” he notes. “I make films that matter to me and hopefully to the audience as well.”


The Need for Reinvention

Imtiaz believes filmmakers must reinvent themselves with each project. “A new story should change you as a director,” he says. This philosophy has guided him throughout his career, ensuring each film feels fresh and unique.


The Human Side of Chamkila

Discussing his latest project, “Chamkila,” a biopic, Imtiaz found the experience refreshing. “This time, I focused on real-life research instead of just imagination,” he explains. Filming in the villages of Punjab added an authentic touch, helping him capture the essence of Chamkila’s life and struggles.

Despite Chamkila’s controversial legacy, Imtiaz wasn’t apprehensive. “I related to his journey as an artist, his love for performance, and the challenges of mass communication,” he shares.


Mental Health in Focus

Imtiaz’s films often highlight mental health issues, though unintentionally. He believes it’s important to have open conversations about mental health. “There should be more dialogue and less mystery around such a crucial topic,” he says.

Imtiaz Ali continues to evolve as a filmmaker, using his craft to explore complex characters and important social issues, while staying true to the stories that inspire him.

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