The trailer of ‘Unpaused: Naya Safar’, an anthology of five short films that highlight stories of hope amid Covid, was released on Saturday.
The anthology features five stories: ‘Teen Tigada’ directed by Ruchir Arun; ‘The Couple’ by Nupur Asthana; ‘Gond Ke Laddu’ by Shikha Makan; ‘War Room’ by Ayappa KM; and ‘Vaikunth’ by Nagraj Manjule of ‘Sairat’ fame. Each showcases the emotions of hope, positivity and forgiveness playing out as the pandemic rages.
Talking about the anthology and his film ‘Teen Tigada’, Ruchir Arun, said: “‘Unpaused: Naya Safar’ anthology boasts of compelling narratives, showcasing a multitude of emotions and we’re really excited to bring our film as part of this anthology. With ‘Teen Tigada’, our effort was to highlight the threshold of human emotions, amidst the tribulations of an ongoing pandemic which hit us like a storm. This film has a unique narrative, beautifully translated on screen by the actors and we hope it will resonate strongly with the masses as well.”
Director Nupur Asthana spoke about her narrative choice saying: “Layoffs were a glaring reality of the pandemic that hit professionals very hard the world over, leaving them uncertain and demotivated.”
Commenting on her film’s core theme, she said: “‘The Couple’ captures the emotional upheaval and complexities caused by such a professional setback and how it impacts personal relationships between two people, altering their realities. The first edition of the anthology beautifully struck a chord with the audience, and we hope now Unpaused Naya Safar will, am sure, open to similar love and appreciation.”
Reflecting on the impact of Covid pandemic, director Shikha Makan said: “The pandemic has affected one and all in ways that are unexpected and uncalled for. We all worry for our loved ones living far away and look for means to connect and care for them even from a distance. And sometimes we find connections with strangers too.”
Shedding light on her film’s idea, she said: “The idea of ‘Gond Ke Laddu’ was to showcase the spectrum of human bonds, but with a twist. It was an enriching experience to shoot this film with an amazing cast and crew who breathed life into this subtle yet substantial narrative. We’re sure the story will connect with the audiences at an emotional level.”
Director Ayappa KM, whose film ‘War Room’ captures the reality of frontline workers, said: “‘War Room’ showcases the vulnerability of frontline workers who encountered unfavorable situations during the outbreak of the pandemic. This is a gripping story that unravels a different facet of human emotion in duress and I owe it to the entire team for bringing it alive so beautifully.”
Vaikunth director Nagraj Manjule, said: “‘Unpaused: Naya Safar’ anthology reflects on a range of emotions with each of its films, and Vaikunth adds on to this with a unique balance of gloom and hope, peppered with unpredictability. We, as a team are humbled and honored to bring this story as part of this anthology and we hope that it stays with the audience for a long time.”
Starring an ensemble cast of Saqib Saleem, Shreya Dhanwanthary, Neena Kulkarni and Priyanshu Painyuli, ‘Unpaused: Naya Safar’, will be available to stream on Prime Video from January 21.