Well known Punjabi theatre and screen actor and film writer Rana Ranbir unveiled his directorial debut film Asees, an offbeat story that, like his play Good Man Di Laaltan, touches on various social issues including women’s freedom or lack thereof. The film will Star Ranbir and a number of veteran character actors including Sardar Sohi as well as six fresh faces selected from Facebook casting calls and video auditions through whatsapp. That’s some good use of social media. Shooting of this film begins in December and the 25 day schedule will conclude on December 30-31. The film is scheduled to release on June 22, 2018. The film is budgeted at rupees 2 Crore ($400,000 CAD) and producers, which includes Surrey’s Lovepreet Lucky Sandhu and Baldev Bath of Basant Motors along with Ranbir, should be able to finish it in that very low budget given that it has no big stars. Budgets in the 2-3 Crore rupees range are known as recovery budgets if it’s a well made film with a good story. Given that most Punjabi Star-driven films with Amarinder Gill, Gippy Grewal, Ammy Virk and superstar Diljit Dosanjh are budgeted in the range of 6-8-12 crore rupees ($1.2 million to $2.4 million CAD) budgets, Asees is a safe bet for this team as it should recover its budget and hopefully make a handsome profit. That’s the assumption always when you start an exciting creative endeavour like making a film!
****By R. Paul Dhillon