Guwahati: Filmmaker Bhargav Saikia, who previously helmed Tom Alter– Shernaz Patel starrer The Black Cat adapted from a short story by eminent author Ruskin Bond, is all set to make his feature directorial debut with horror–fantasy drama Bokshi.
He made the announcement on social media earlier this week with a concept poster depicting a young woman engulfed in flames with a blood moon looming behind. The film title, scribbled on the poster with charcoal in an eerie font, is said to represent a mythical entity in the film.
The film is based on an original screenplay written by debutant writer Harsh Vaibhav. The bilingual feature (Hindi/English) is scheduled to be filmed this winter across multiple locations in northeast India. The plot details have been kept under wraps.
Saikia in a release said, “As a filmmaker, my predominant interest lies in horror and fantasy fiction – Bokshi will give me the ideal opportunity to explore these two genres wholeheartedly. I am extremely excited to present this surreal contemporary horror tale to cinemagoers in India and beyond.”
The casting and pre-production activities will be carried out virtually in the upcoming months in light of the prevailing COVID-19 pandemic.
Saikia’s The Black Cat won the Best Cinematography and Best Music awards and received nominations for Best Director and Best Film at the 2018 Critics’ Choice Short Film Awards presented by Film Critics Guild of India. Saikia’s additional directorial credits include Awakenings featuring Palomi Ghosh from Netflix’s Typewriter. The horror short film, which was showcased at major genre film festivals such as Sitges (Spain) and Neuchâtel (Switzerland), was acquired and released digitally last year by leading American horror brand Alter.
Bokshi will be produced by his independent production company Lorien Motion Pictures. The company’s maiden production was the much discussed Kashmir-set feature Kaafiron Ki Namaaz which premiered at South Korea’s Jeonju International Film Festival in 2014. More recently, Lorien’s horror feature project The Ordeal was chosen to participate at the prestigious Network of Asian Fantastic Films (NAFF) co-production market presented by Bucheon International Fantastic Film Festival (BiFan) in South Korea.