In a country where the top-notch cinematographers are not getting due recognition, Subhash Maskara, a young boy from Patna, Bihar dreamt of being a cinematographer a few years back and he actually made his dream a reality. Capture the frames which tell stories is the only thing he loves to do and trust me I know him since my childhood, even we shared the same bench for months and since then only I knew he is one rigid dreamer who is different.
We had a long confab last week and I was more than proud to know that my old buddy who bunked the classes with élan, has now worked with some of the great talents of India and world cinema in a very short span of time with no proper study of Cinematography in any film school, being an economics graduate he conquered all the obstacles to follow his passion.
Here is the highlight of the interview;
Q1. What made you choose the field of Films and direction of photography to be specific?
Ans: It all began when I took break after 12th boards exam to prepare for engineering, then in a mid way I started reading literature. After that, the idea of storytelling fascinated me but still, I was not sure. Then I got to do theater and then the idea of storytelling through films came to me. I started making short films and doing everything on my own. I loved playing around with lights and shadows and thus an interest in photography developed.
Q2. What was your first major break?
Ans: I worked in a feature film called “Umrika” directed by Prashant Nair and that proved to be a major step in my journey. The movie stars Life of Pi fame Suraj Sharma, The Grand Budapest Hotel fame Tony Revolori, Prateik Babbar and Adil Hussain.
(Trailer of Umrika)
Q3. What goal have you made for yourself and how far have you walked towards it?
Ans: I want to be part of good films and live a simple life as I am doing now. The journey has just started and it sure is a long one, I just want to make it a fascinating one-off course on my terms.
Q4. What is your ultimate dream?
Ans: To be happy and to make people around me happy, to lead a peaceful life and travel a lot.
Q5. Tell us about the projects in which you have worked so far?
Ans: Started with Umrika, then few shunned independent films and yes, I recently did a feature film called “Shreelancer” directed by Sandeep Mohan as the director of photography. I have been working on some personal projects comprising of visual storytelling, also I am keen on working in Independent productions with people who has the hunger of telling new great stories. I direct commercials to satisfy my pocket but to satisfy myself I work in films with refreshing stories.
Q6. A film which is closest to your heart in which you have worked and why?
Ans: Every film because it teaches you a lot but yes, Shreelancer is very close to my heart. It is a story to which a lot of people can relate and so do I.
I have worked as a director of photography in Shreelancer which is about a journey of an artist and he travels through all his worries and gets out of denial mode to accept who he is. This is what we all go through at one point or other. I can relate to the character and hence this work is very close to my heart.
Q7. A film you wished to be a part of, Hindi and English.
Ans: Ahh, there are so many.. Let me tell you the most recent ones.
“Masaan” directed by Neeraj Ghaywan, it is a poetic film filled with a lot of emotions and La La Land directed by Damien Chazelle, I have never seen something ending as it ends in La La Land. It is an overwhelming feeling, a satisfying experience, and a visual delight. These two films are my recent favorites and left a lot of impression on me.
Q8. Who is your biggest support system in life?
Ans: My family is the biggest support system. My parents and siblings stood by me and always believed in me, I am what I am today is just because of them.
Q9. The day which changed your life or the best day in life so far?
Ans: There are many days which I cherish a lot. There is no one such day which suddenly changed my life but yes some days are special. As far as films are concerned, I really cherish my days shooting “Shrelancer” in the mountains of Himachal Pradesh. Trust me our country has a lot of untapped beauty and I just love traveling. Well, I remember taking my nephews and niece to their first science center visit and I still cherish their smiling faces. Life is full of wonderful moments; we are too worried or busy to live them fully.
Q10. Do you also want to direct some day?
Ans: One step at a time (Laughs), I am very happy with what I am doing and want to enjoy cinematography. Yes, if some day I will write my own story then maybe I’ll direct.
Watch the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan Public Sevice Advertisement Directed by Subhash Maskara,