Ravi Udyawar
Ravi Udyawar, the man behind Silk Route's iconic 1998 Dooba Dooba video, says his first movie is an emotional drama about the only bond that lasts forever
Aastha Atray Banan (MID-DAY; June 25, 2017)

"I wanted to make my first movie a relevant one," says Ravi Udyawar, 45, of his directorial debut Mom. Starring Sridevi and Nawazuddin Siddiqui. The July 7 release explores the relationship between mother and daughter. Udyawar, who started his career at Channel V and MTV before going on to direct music videos and advertisements, says that his first movie isn't really a thriller, which is the first impression one gets from trailers. "It's an emotional drama - about the one bond that lasts your lifetime, the one between a child and mother. And, I think everyone will relate with it."

Udyawar met Boney Kapoor in 2014, when the latter gave him the germ of the idea, and asked what he could do with it, a movie that could then serve as Sridevi's next after the much acclaimed English Vinglish. "We fleshed out the idea, even detailing the background stories of all characters. And then we went and pitched it to ma'am (Sridevi). She loved it right away and said she just had to do it." Getting Nawaz on board wasn't a hard task. Udyawar put his JJ School of Art degree to good use. "I knew how I wanted the character to look, because I think like an artist, which is what I originally am. I made sketches and carried them along when I went to meet him. And I think when you see the character, it's easier to understand it. He said yes immediately."

Udyawar credits his advertising career for helping him understand the art of filmmaking. The man behind campaigns such as L'Oreal and Asian Paints, says that it's all about grabbing eyeballs. "Advertising teaches you how to get attention in 30 seconds. It also teaches you how to design a shot - for instance, what kind of energy does a scene need. It really taught me all my technical know-how." But he also says movie making is a completely different ball game, one he is just getting a hang of.

Udyawar is no stranger to making moving images tell a story. He directed India's first underwater video when he shot Silk Route's Dooba Dooba in 1998. The song and video became iconic in the indie-pop scene. "The first day at that shoot was disastrous. This had never been done before. We put the camera in a metal box underwater, and nobody knew when the reel started, and when it went off. So, we got nothing," he laughs. But the second day, they went back and persevered. "It worked beautifully, and as you know, we created history."

Right now though, he is waiting to see Mom's fate. "You dive into these characters and you want them to come to life in that picture perfect image. Let's hope it works out."