The acting acumen of Bollywood superstar Aamir Khan, who has found a fan following in China, has caught the eye of Japanese filmmaker Norihiro Koizumi who hopes to direct the actor someday. Known for the successful Japanese Chihayafuru trilogy, Koizumi came to India last month for a Japanese Film Festival organised by PVR Cinemas by The Japan Foundation.
It was his first time in India. Not only did he have a great time looking at "happy" faces and tasting the variety of food, but he also got a new perspective about Indian cinema.
"About Indian cinema, I had this image that it's all about musicals... But when I came to India and saw a couple of films, I felt there were a lot films which did not have many musical scenes. It kind of changed my view of Indian cinema. There's a variety of films... Not just musicals, not just dancing. Some movies have profound themes. I thought I should watch a little bit more," Koizumi told IANS via a recorded response.
He says before he came to India, he saw 3 Idiots and Dangal. "Both of them had the same actor... Aamir Khan. He is a great actor," said Koizumi, who doesn't rule out a chance of an Indian collaboration.
"Yes, it could happen... With Aamir Khan. I think he could be in Japanese cinema too. Maybe I could direct Indian cinema if I have a chance... I don't know about the musical scenes though," he quipped, breaking into a bout of laughter.
The Indian audience, he felt, is very receptive to cinema "I liked the food here in India, and the happy people and I liked the reaction to the films.
People cry, laugh and talk to each other a lot. I feel that's the way films should be watched," he said, adding that hosting a Japanese Film Festival is a great way to show Japanese culture in India.
Apart from the films, patrons also got a chance to savour sushi rolls handcrafted by chef Yutaka Saito for Simply Sushi.
I think it is very important to know each other to be friends. It is the best way to know each other. If there will be another film festival, I will be here in India again," said Koizumi, who is in his late 30s. There is currently a spotlight on Asian cinema ever since the runaway success of "Crazy Rich Asians". As one of the more commercially successful young directors of Asia, what are his views on the changing scenario of diversity and inclusivity?
"Well, Crazy Rich Asians was led by Hollywood. Maybe for us, chances are increasing too. But what we should do is not to change our styles and we should just do our job.
As Asians, we should not adapt to the American or European culture. We just have to keep doing our job, and wait for the world to change and realize what we are doing. Like they chose to make 'Crazy Rich Asians'... They have to change, we don't have to."