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Photographer Jayesh Sheth, Dada Saheb Phalke award winner, who made “Roll Sound Camera Action,” based the plot of the film on what he witnessed in the film industry.

SAN LEANDRO, Calif. — Dada Saheb Phalke award winner Jayesh Sheth has been photographing the biggest Bollywood stars, including Madhuri Dixit and Jackie Shroff, and occasionally Hollywood stars, such as Richard Gere, for the last 30 years.

Now, after 14 years of dabbling in videography, Sheth is making his feature film debut with “Roll Sound Camera Action,” which made its North American debut at the Montreal Film Festival Aug. 30.

Sheth explained how, though the film is set in Mumbai, the international audience at the film festival told him that it was a very international film that captured a struggle that could take place in many countries.

“The response was tremendous,” Sheth told India-West by phone from Toronto.

Written and directed by Sheth, who also did the cinematography, the film follows the lives of five strugglers trying to make it big in Bollywood.

Combining what he saw of the industry from his own life with a bit of fiction, Sheth paints an unglamorous portrait of the never-ending struggle of up-and-coming actors whose dreams are shattered routinely as they learn about friendship and selfishness.

“As a photographer in Bollywood — I started my career in 1978 — I’ve seen many rags-to-riches stories and how dreamers deal with the dilemma between passion and destiny,” Sheth said.

The director explained how he saw the rise of many prominent celebrities, such as Akshay Kumar, who was his lighting assistant before he became an actor, and felt that it would be an interesting struggle to capture on film.

The filmmakers also chose to cast the sort of actors who were the subject of the film, strugglers.

Sheth said, “They’ve all been struggling for like 10 years, 12 years to hear the magic words: roll, sound, camera, action.”

The idea for “Roll, Sound, Camera, Action” had been in Sheth’s mind for some time, but he had not started working on a script until 2012.

“For a couple of years this idea was just sitting in my mind,” Sheth told India-West. “I didn’t know how to put it down on paper.”

But after writing down all the incidents he had in his mind, a storyline slowly developed. At first, he said it was coming off as too much of a docudrama, but he wanted to do it as a fictional piece.

After a year of working on the script, things fell into place and after almost three years, the movie was ready for audiences.

The photographer first entered the world of videography in 2001 when he made his first music video. He has made 40 music videos since in addition to a documentary.

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slug: Jayesh Sheth 432

Jayesh Sheth – 1:

A still from “Roll Sound Camera Action,” Bollywood photographer Jayesh Sheth’s first feature film, which captures the struggles of up-and-coming actors in the Indian film industry.

Jayesh Sheth – 2:

Photographer Jayesh Sheth, Dada Saheb Phalke award winner, who made “Roll Sound Camera Action,” based the plot of the film on what he witnessed in the film industry.

 

Award-Winning Photographer’s Film Captures Struggles of Bollywood Actors

By SONIA WARAICH

India-West Staff Reporter

SAN LEANDRO, Calif. — Dada Saheb Phalke award winner Jayesh Sheth has been photographing the biggest Bollywood stars, including Madhuri Dixit and Jackie Shroff, and occasionally Hollywood stars, such as Richard Gere, for the last 30 years.

Now, after 14 years of dabbling in videography, Sheth is making his feature film debut with “Roll Sound Camera Action,” which made its North American debut at the Montreal Film Festival Aug. 30.

Sheth explained how, though the film is set in Mumbai, the international audience at the film festival told him that it was a very international film that captured a struggle that could take place in many countries.

“The response was tremendous,” Sheth told India-West by phone from Toronto.

Written and directed by Sheth, who also did the cinematography, the film follows the lives of five strugglers trying to make it big in Bollywood.

Combining what he saw of the industry from his own life with a bit of fiction, Sheth paints an unglamorous portrait of the never-ending struggle of up-and-coming actors whose dreams are shattered routinely as they learn about friendship and selfishness.

“As a photographer in Bollywood — I started my career in 1978 — I’ve seen many rags-to-riches stories and how dreamers deal with the dilemma between passion and destiny,” Sheth said.

The director explained how he saw the rise of many prominent celebrities, such as Akshay Kumar, who was his lighting assistant before he became an actor, and felt that it would be an interesting struggle to capture on film.

The filmmakers also chose to cast the sort of actors who were the subject of the film, strugglers.

Sheth said, “They’ve all been struggling for like 10 years, 12 years to hear the magic words: roll, sound, camera, action.”

The idea for “Roll, Sound, Camera, Action” had been in Sheth’s mind for some time, but he had not started working on a script until 2012.

“For a couple of years this idea was just sitting in my mind,” Sheth told India-West. “I didn’t know how to put it down on paper.”

But after writing down all the incidents he had in his mind, a storyline slowly developed. At first, he said it was coming off as too much of a docudrama, but he wanted to do it as a fictional piece.

After a year of working on the script, things fell into place and after almost three years, the movie was ready for audiences.

The photographer first entered the world of videography in 2001 when he made his first music video. He has made 40 music videos since in addition to a documentary.

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