Medient Studios and producer Manu Kumaran are backing Kamal Swaroop’s documentary The Battle Of Banaras, which follows the on-going Indian elections.
The film focuses on the how the election is playing out in Banaras, a city that represents India’s social diversity and also has significant mythological relevance. Both present-day politics and Indian history are explored in the film. Scheduled to wrap on May 20, the film is scheduled for Indian release on August 15.
“I read Elias Canetti’s book, Crowds And Power, about 30 years ago and have been hooked on to it since then. So, when [Arvind] Kejriwal challenged [Nahendra] Modi in Banaras, I thought I was at the best event, at the best place and the best time to apply my learning from the book,” said Swaroop.
“There is tremendous global interest in the 2014 Indian elections. This year’s battle for the Banaras seat will determine India’s destiny and who better than Indian cinema’s enfant terrible to capture it for posterity,” said Kumaran.
Atlas International, the German sales company that was recently acquired by Medient, is handling international sales on the film. Medient is planning a day-and-date release in India, UK, Middle East and East Asian markets.
Swaroop’s first film, cult classic Om-Dar-Ba-Dar (1988), was restored and released by India’s National Film Development Corporation (NFDC) this January. The film premiered at the Berlin Film Festival and travelled the festival circuit when it was first made, but never received a theatrical release in India.