Here’s to Friendship


Two young men debate on the lure of romance, with one believing in its power, even as the other dismisses it as nothing but distraction. Then one night, as they get together in a hotel, they meet two interesting women who change their views on the subject for good. With this story for a premise, Strangers in the Night does hold promise as a slice-of-life film. What's also interesting is the fact that this short film, with a running time of 15 minutes, is part of Chivas Studio. An annual toast to cinema, art, installation and music, the two-day event kickstarted on Friday with the screening of this film at the Grand Hyatt.

Filmmaker Shakun Batra (of Ek Main Aur Ekk Tu fame) explains how Strangers in the Night best represents the theme of friendship, collaborations and creative brotherhood. "Throughout the film, the focus remains on the friendship between the protagonists," he says, adding that once this story was finalised, he had just under two months to finish all the work on the film. "Right from scripting and casting to shooting and post-production, we have done everything within a tight deadline and therein lay the challenge," says Batra, who made the film under the creative guidance of Karan Johar.

While the ensemble cast (Mohit Marwah, Karan Pandit, Saba Azad and Yolanda Mclellan) of the film didn't boast of big names, the glamour quotient of the two-day event is being upped by Rohit Bal, whose fashion show is going to be held today. Not only has the designer come up with a bright and colourful "Tamaasha" collection, but taking the theme a step further, Bal has also come up with big steel installations. "There are no models at this showcase; instead, the installations wear outfits that borrow from the Indian mela. In fact, the installations are sculptural interpretations of an average street scene in such a mela. So you have the tightrope walker, the golgappa seller and 15-foot high puppets that lend it the feel of a traditional Indian tamasha, albeit with a modern twist," notes Bal.

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