Films can bring countries together: Farhan Akhtar

Agencies Posted: Feb 04, 2012 at 1123 hrs
New Delhi Director-actor Farhan Akhtar, whose last film \'Don 2\' was not only shot in Germany but was co-produced by a German company says such collaborations can bring countries together.

The 38-year-old filmmaker said the film which has been co-produced by Mathias Schwerbrock, is the first actual co-production in Bollywood.

“It is the first time that a foreign national has directly been associated with an Indian motion picture. It is a first of it\'s kind. Films that are shot in foreign location not only add up to the story but also helps in strengthening ties between two countries. “\'Don 2\' is a product from two major film producing countries,” Farhan said.

\'Don 2\' will be screened at Berlin International Film Festival, on the third day of the 11-day event and is also scheduled to release in German cinemas on February 16.

“It feels great that the film will be screened in Berlin. The whole cast and crew had a wonderful time shooting there. The local crew did open the doors for us. Once we were together on making the film, they proved to be extremely helpful,” he said.

The director also said he zeroed down Berlin as the location for the film because he wanted the city to be on the Bollywood screens.

“When I came to Berlin on holiday in 2007 I was amazed and overwhelmed by the spirit of the city and most excited to see the mix of architecture, politics, music, cinema and all the signs of a healthy cultural life. Just like my character, \'Don\', this city is avante garde and cutting edge. Two reasons for me coming here -- Berlin is the right location for my film and Berlin has to be on the Bollywood screens,” he said.

“Berlin is considered as Germany\'s number one film city. Many Hollywood stars including Quentin Tarantino and Brad Pitt, Tom Cruise, and Kate Winslet have shot in Berlin. Bollywood had, however, stayed away. But all that changed in 2010 as in his latest venture \'Don 2\', Farhan Akhtar decided to bring superstars Shah Rukh Khan and Priyanka Chopra to the city,” said Cord Meier-Klodt, the acting Ambassador of Germany to India.

The 3D film was shot in Germany\'s prominent locations like Alexanderplatz, the Berlin Cathedral, the State Opera, the French Cathedral and Concert Hall at Gendarmenmarkt, as well as the Brandenburg Gate.

Farhan, Ritesh Sidhwani and actors Priyanka Chopra and Shah Rukh Khan, who has a huge fan following in the country will be present at \'Berlinale\' for the premiere of their film on February 11 at the Friedrichstadt-Palast.

“The Berlin Film Festival truly stands a lot more for the art form of cinema and a lot less about the commerce of it. We are privileged that our film will be premiered there,” Farhan said during the interaction at the German Embassy here.