Writer-lyricist-actor-comedian Varun Grover, who is known for his works in films such as ‘Gangs of Wasseypur’, ‘Masaan’, ‘Newton’, ‘Monica, O My Darling’ and ‘Sandeep Aur Pinky Faraar’, has turned director with the film ‘All India Rank’, which recently had its world premiere at The International Film Festival Of Rotterdam (IFFR).
Varun shared that the film is semi-autobiographical and his idea behind the film was to capture joy, confusion, love, doubt, hope and cynicism that comes at the age of 17 and the constant tussle between ambition and mediocrity.
Talking about his directorial debut as a feature film director, Varun said: “We all struggle when we are 17. The hormonal desires called love, the constant swinging between ‘ambition’ and ‘mediocrity’, the generational trauma of parents – all create a minor-key horror-comedy around us. With ‘All India Rank’, I want to capture exactly that phase of our lives, the phase of joy and confusion, love and doubt, hope and cynicism.”
‘All India Rank’ is a coming of age drama which stars Bodhisattva Sharma, Samta Sudiksha, Shashi Bhushan, Geeta Agrawal and Sheeba Chaddha in the prominent roles. The film has been Produced by MatchBox Shots and co-produced by Clock Tower Pictures.
Notably, the film is set in the late 90s, the pre-mobile era where 17-year-old Vivek is sent away from home to a coaching centre to prepare for the highly competitive Indian Institute of Technology entrance exams.
“The film is a semi-autobiographical slice-of-life dramedy as well as a time capsule of life in the India of the 1990s – a time of American-style capitalism entering India – giving rise to a new consumerist middle-class that valued STEM over liberal arts because of market compulsions. Vivek, the protagonist, like me struggles with these new concepts that place personal joy beneath the value you bring to the society,” Varun added.