Indo-American production Harami starring Emraan Hashmi and directed by Shyam Madiraju is officially selected for the competition round at the Busan International Film Festival 2020. It is one of the 10 films from the competition section that has been selected from 9 countries. Harami is the only Indian movie in the competition. Due to COVID-19, most of the film festivals are cancelled. Only Venice and Busan International Film Festival have been happening physically this year. 194 movies are going to be screened at the theatre. From 21st October, the festival will go on till 30th October, 2020.
Regarding selection of the movie Harami at a prestigious Busan International Film Festival, director Shyam has said “As a filmmaker, I’m truly elated that Harami has been invited to be a part of Busan Festival’s main competition section. Korea is the epicenter of the filmmaking universe right now, so it’s an immense honor to be a part of their celebration of cinema this year. Harami, while set in the streets and slums of Mumbai is a universal story of hope and redemption. The film, a labor of love, took me over two years to just scout during numerous visits to India and despite all the monumental challenges we shot live in Victoria Terminus, Bombay Central, and other trains stations, a feat not for the faint-hearted. With crews over 200 including international talent from America, UK, Denmark and South Africa, Harami was a global production set in the slums of Dharavi and crowded streets of Mohamed Ali Road.”
Later on, he has also added “And the most endearing and cherishing part of this whole journey was working with all the actors in the film. Especially the kids, a majority of them having never acted before, and some actually from Dharavi; it was an experience of a lifetime. But it was Emraan Hashmi playing the role of ‘Sagar Bhai’ a very Dickensian Fegin like character who is a former English teacher turned gang lord who is the real revelation of the film. The role complex and nuanced and unlike anything Emraan had done before, was a true challenge for both Emraan and I. Having never worked in Bollywood or with Emraan before, all my concerns disappeared when I saw how collaborative and detailed Emraan, a true director’s actor, was with his preparation for the role. We discussed in great detail over numerous reading sessions and rehearsals, the smallest elements of his character, like his gait, his diction, his style of speaking, the choice of English over Hindi, and his unique look that we created for him.”
Emraan Hashmi has disclosed “It was Shyam’s script that really attracted me to his project. And his obsession with details, it was very contagious. Kudos to Shyam and his Harami team for making it into the prestigious main competition section of the festival. It was a true passion project for all involved and I am looking forward to the day when we will be able to share the film with the Indian audience.”
Story of Harami is very hard hitting. It is a street crime saga that is visually striking. Through the youth’s eyes, both love and redemption is showcased. However, the backdrop stays very vibrant yet chaotic.