Sobhita Broke Down on Last Day: Anurag Kashyap on ‘Ghost Stories’

Ghost Stories streams on Netflix on 1 January.

Published29 Dec 2019, 05:29 AM IST
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3 min read

Netflix’s upcoming Ghost Stories is an anthology of four films in the thriller/horror space. These short films have been directed by Zoya Akhtar, Anurag Kashyap, Dibakar Banerjee and Karan Johar. Ahead of its release, The Quint caught up with Anurag Kashyap, and Sobhita Dhulipala who stars in his film, about making a horror film, if they enjoy the genre and the process of shooting the film.

You know I was reading the excerpt and in that it was mentioned that this was your most satisfying film. Why is that?

Anurag Kashyap: Because fearlessly you go and you explore something you have not done before, and do it with love. Every time there is always this pressure of delivering. The advantage with a format like Lust Stories and Ghost Stories is that your voice stays unfiltered. Ghost Stories is exactly like what I wanted to do.

But do you like horror generally?

Anurag Kashyap: Now I really love it, I want to go out and make one more. I want to make a full length now. I never thought I could do horror, I always wanted to do horror and I was scared of it. But I just enjoyed doing this so much. I enjoyed creeping people out.

Sobhita Dhulipala: I’m generally very scared. I don’t even watch horror movie trailers because I get very creeped out. I saw Vaastu Shastra when I was in school and I got a fever for a week. So it’s that bad. I’ve read books which had those elements of psychological horror but then it’s vivid imagination that is uncomfortable. But this film I don’t think is conventionally gory or like scary. I think the creepiest fears are inside of us, not some external body. I mean if you can give a shape and form and some kind of a physicality, you still have a sense of what it’s like and you understand it. You gauge it, but what’s inside of you is intangible and always more scary like love.

When you’re on set, how do you know if it’s working, the scares?

Anurag Kashyap: It’s not really about whether the scares are working. I don’t think I have scares in the film. My story is not supposed to be scary it just creeps up on you. It just shows you the worst you can imagine.

Sobhita Dhulipala: Or the fact that it is very much a part of reality for so many people, that’s what makes it real.

Anurag Kashyap: It builds from anxieties and trauma built around pregnancy, miscarriage. And it (the story) actually comes from a 22-year-old girl.

Was there anything particularly difficult about making this film?

Anurag Kashyap: The technical parts of it, depending on the visual effects and depending on the prosthetics and things like that. And for it to deliver and make it look real, that took the longest time.

Was there a reason why the tone and the colour palette is that, the black and white?

Anurag Kashyap: Yeah because we wanted it to have a sepia tone, keep it spooky. And it’s very sparse, we wanted it to feel like that. It’s almost like a silent film.

Did you feel like you had to do anything differently?

Sobhita Dhulipala: No, I felt exposed because I feel like every person has disturbing thoughts about the future and what happened before and we have bad dreams and we have nightmares and just so many things you know. Life is beautiful, but living isn’t. It was just nice to consolidate some of my fears, part imaginary and part experience, part witnessing people around. So to put all of that into a story and to know that this story could be the reality for so many people. So many girls on set really resonated with it and opened up about their journeys with the subject.

Video Editor: Rahul Sanpui

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