When it comes to horror, Bollywood has been more funny than fearful. From clichéd, blood thirsty paranormal creatures, to creaking doors to moaning voices to dark woods to witch doctors, nothing really has spooked up the audiences. But, this trend is changing now. Filmmaker Vikram Bhatt, tells us why Horror Story, produced and written by him, will really scare us.
Vikram says the idea of HS flashed across his inward eye while he was shooting for Raaz 3. “During the shoot, I was sitting in a hotel in Mumbai and it occurred to me that a night in a haunted hotel could turn out to be quite a horror story. In fact, while thinking about it I got goose bumps and consequently started writing the film,” Bhatt says. “There are no secret ingredients to making a good horror movie. One has to be honest to the idea of horror, without unnecessarily adding entertainment value or deviating from the original focus of scaring people. If someone is buying a ticket to watch a horror film, as a filmmaker, it is my duty to ensure that every sinew aligning his bones shivers while watching the film.”
Horror Story is about seven childhood friends meeting after years.
They are meeting to give a farewell party to one of them in the group, as he is leaving for an overseas assignment. What happens to them during their last night of fun and partying is what the film is all about. Vikram adds that among this motley lot, some believe in the paranormal while others don’t till, they face their worst nightmare. “This film will be very different to what we are used to watching in Bollywood. It is realistic and unlike the usual larger than life horror films. Our youngsters are smart.
Hence, you won’t see superstitions or supernatural things happening. No reference to mythology or flying ghosts either.
Rather, it’ll feel like it could actually happen to you,” the filmmaker tell us.
The buzz is that HS has been inspired by the 1997 Hollywood flick I Know What You Did Last Summer. Bhatt denies it. “This film is pure horror while that one was more like a thriller and a lot of blood slashes,” Vikram says. While the 1920 series was directed by Bhatt himself, for Horror Story, he has put his trust into fresh new director Ayush Raina. “He has also done some good work with documentaries and short films. And, I love how the film has shaped up. Ayush has done an excellent job.”
With horror films, the Bhatt family has scripted succes for years.
Is that what drives him to do so many horror films? Vikram laughs. “The money I earn out of it is what drives me most (laughs). Off late, I have had the most success making horror/thriller films. The quality of horror films made in India still has not been upto the mark when we compare it with Hollywood flicks, so I keep attempting to move closer with every attempt.”
But now with his next directorial film Creature, Vikram is expanding his horizons beyond horror. “It’s a sci-fi adventure film which will be a creature movie, somewhat like Jurassic Park.
Once you get into Bollywood it takes some time to figure out what your space is, to figure out what you want. I think it is now that I have come to that point where I know what exactly I want,” Vikram concludes.