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Siraj Syed

Siraj Syed is the India Correspondent for and a member of FIPRESCI, the International Federation of Film Critics. He is a Film Festival Correspondent since 1976, Film-critic since 1969 and a Feature-writer since 1970. He is also an acting and dialogue coach. 



IFFI 51, 16-24 January, 26: Past, Present and Future of Visualisation, according to Aditya Vikram Sengupta

IFFI 51, 16-24 January, 26: Past, Present and Future of Visualisation, according to Aditya Vikram Sengupta

The shift from analogue to digital has changed the art of film-making, and also the mindset for film-making at the same time. “Digitalisation has been a game-changer. With the coming of the digital age, taking re-takes has become easier and visualisation has taken a backseat. The process of capturing an image is not real anymore”, feels award-winning film director, cinematographer and graphic designer Aditya Vikram Sengupta. “Earlier, there used to be magic in discovering things, even in terms of photography”, Sengupta opined, in course of a virtual In-Conversation session with journalist and documentary film-maker Rohit Gandhi, on the topic, ‘Past, Present and Future of Visualisation’, at the 51st edition of International Film Festival of India.

“I am just a medium serving to help a film grow”, stated the film-maker who is planning his next film on celluloid. About his influences and inspirations, he said, “My childhood, my growing up have an influence on my films. I have had a strong relation with Kolkata. I have been close to the city from a young age”. Film-making happened accidentally to him and he always wanted to be a doctor, said Sengupta. “My intention was to love life, and share it with people. Film-making is almost like writing a diary. It is a tool for me to express what I want to express and I am pretty much obsessed with it”, he stated. In the context of OTT platforms, he said, “It is like a mall. There is so much of content”. He also opined, “Cinema is not considered as an art form anymore. Everyone is busy churning out as much as they can. But, in the process, ‘brewing time’ is not given to a film”, he added.

Sengupta further said, “All films cannot be placed in the same category. My kind of films will have a different financial model than a Rajkumar Hirani film. Channels, earnings, distribution - everything will be different There are different audiences, different markets”.

The film-maker, whose debut film, in 2014, earned him Indira Gandhi Award for Best Debut Film, at the 62nd National Film Awards, feels “Bollywood films still have the same old formula. But earlier, there used to be a solid, powerful storyline. But story-lines have now become weak and need a lot of work”.  However, he calls himself a Bollywood buff, who was a huge Mithun Chakraborty fan, and loved watching Anil Kapoor films.


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About Siraj Syed

Syed Siraj
(Siraj Associates)

Siraj Syed is a film-critic since 1970 and a Former President of the Freelance Film Journalists' Combine of India.

He is the India Correspondent of and a member of FIPRESCI, the international Federation of Film Critics, Munich, Germany

Siraj Syed has contributed over 1,015 articles on cinema, international film festivals, conventions, exhibitions, etc., most recently, at IFFI (Goa), MIFF (Mumbai), MFF/MAMI (Mumbai) and CommunicAsia (Singapore). He often edits film festival daily bulletins.

He is also an actor and a dubbing artiste. Further, he has been teaching media, acting and dubbing at over 30 institutes in India and Singapore, since 1984.

Bandra West, Mumbai


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