Uttarakhand disaster: Bollywood shoots receive a blow



The recent rain-induced disaster in Uttarakhand is set to strike a blow to the state’s popularity as a film shooting destination. In the past Bollywood films such as Student of the Year, Koi Mil Gaya, Kisna, Bunty Aur Babli and Aisha have been shot there.

Before the calamity struck, a big-budget Bollywood film starring A-listers Hrithik Roshan and Kareena Kapoor was to be shot in Rudrapryag — one of the worst-hit districts now — in November. That prospect seems bleak now.

“We had already conducted at least five rounds of location recce as well as stunts and lighting trials for the Hrithik Roshan film,” says Uttarakhand-based line producer Sanjeev Mehta, who has coordinated the shoots of several Bollywood films in the state. “The shoot was expected to last for three months in Uttarakhand. I wonder what will happen now. I am also concerned about other small and big films that were to be shot in the state.”

Mehta adds that the fate of many a film hangs in the balance as the massive scale of devastation has raised security concerns.

According to sources, noted filmmakers Subhash Ghai and Ram Gopal Verma were planning to shoot in the Valley of Flowers and Gangotri regions in Chamoli and Uttarkashi districts respectively this year, which are likely to be called off now.

“The blow may lessen with time if the state government restores road connectivity and snapped facilities,” said Pankaj Sharma, an Uttarakhand-based coordinator for films and television serials.