Talented filmmakers from around the world converged at the 13th Annual ReelWorld Film Festival in Toronto recently to discuss their latest works. Read the interview with director Vikram Dasgupta for his short film, Calcutta Taxi.
Angela Walcott: What is your movie about?
Vikram Dasgupta: “Calcutta Taxi is a lost and found incident based on a true story–my story. I lost my backpack in Calcutta and created a film of three stories. The first is me losing the backpack, the second story is the cab driver who helped me find it, and the third is the person who stole it. It is a story of the backpack from three different perspectives.”
AW: Is this your first film?
VIKRAM: “I have done a few short films. I wrote Calcutta Taxi as a feature but Bravo suggested I market it as a short film.”
AW: What was the financing process like?
VIKRAM: “We used more than half of our budget just getting to Calcutta. As a filmmaker never let budget get in the way. I believe as a filmmaker resistance is the way. If there is adversity you can make it good. I am writing a feature with a friend preferably by year-end there will be a first draft. I design and brand television shows too. I’m working on the Pan-athletes right now. I went to art school because there were no film schools in Calcutta. My dad suggested I study Fine Arts. It was the best advice I ever took.”
AW: You have worked with ReelWorld in a different capacity?
VIKRAM: “I made the film Calcutta Taxi and Tonya [Lee Williams] asked if I would do their trailer. When Tonya first spoke to me and we Skyped for a few days, I wanted to know where Tonya was coming from and her source for the start of the festival. The more I spoke to Tonya, the more I discovered her vision. It’s a global community/a global village. This almost sees past the diversions. I wanted to find a way of connecting the different races. A film festival focuses on things that are more universal. There wasn’t a lot of time for post production. Everything I did had to be done on camera.”