I had the chance to get up-close and personal with Mohitha Sripathi, director of Now and Then, an upcoming Independent short-film in 2016. Mohitha took me through her journey of Now and Then, gave me some personal happenings in her life, and my favorite- a quick rapid-fire round!
Tell us what your Now and Then journey has been like as the director and writer of the film.
Mohitha: As a director, I loved every moment of it. It was definitely a new role for me but it helped me realize a lot of my personal strengths and I also learned so much from all the responsibility this position carried.
As a writer, I realized how difficult writing a screenplay was! I think this was definitely my biggest challenge during NAT but luckily I had a lot of help from Satya.
Now and Then is considered to be an Indian-cinema inspired film without the 3-hour commitment. How difficult was it to include all aspects an Indian film has in such a short time-span?
Mohitha: Well, I’m not sure I can say I included all aspects of an Indian film, but I did take a lot of inspiration from Telugu and Hindi films. I tried to incorporate everything I liked from these industries into Now and Then- the songs, the dance, the romantic love story and the very dramatic twist of events.
It wasn’t difficult to incorporate these elements because that was the vision from the beginning but the process was difficult because we were predominantly first timers and also because we are running the project on a very tight budget.
How did the story of Now and Then come to mind and how did you know this idea needed to turn into a film?
Mohitha: I always wanted to make a film or be in a film. When I met Rome, we began discussing our shared interests and one day we both just decided to make a movie. We didn’t have a story, we didn’t have a single clue on how or when but we just knew we wanted to make a movie. We also knew that if we didn’t try this now, we probably wouldn’t have another chance to do this.
The story came much after we made that decision. It’s a combination of a few real life events and observations. It became more real as we got approvals and guidance from Vijay and Ajay.
Was there a surreal moment during the NAT journey?
Mohitha: There were so many- this whole movie is surreal for me!!!! But I think in general, seeing a lot of my thoughts and ideas come to life was just so surreal.
I don’t know much about the technicality of music but I do know what I like to hear. One day, the music team got back to me with their songs and I remember just being blown away when I heard Fly, House of Rush, and Jaan Meri for the first time. It’s amazing to see a group of people listening and more importantly understanding your ideas and feedback and incorporating them to create something which was even better than what I could have imagined.
Tell us something you’d like people to know about you.
Mohitha: I am trying to learn Hindi.
Your InBetweener background.
Mohitha: I do not have any filmmaking experience before Now and Then. I actually did my undergraduate degree in Biology and am beginning my Masters in Public Health this fall. I do, however, plan to pursue an MFA in the near future.
Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
Mohitha: I see myself as an MFA graduate trying to show my feature film script to a big time production house…..in Hollywood…or maybe the Indian industry, I can’t decide yet!
So what’s next for you?
Mohitha: I’m beginning graduate school this month, but have started on a few smaller projects which I hope to work on while in Miami. I also recently began my second short film script.
Describe the perfect date!
Mohitha: A movie in bed and warm maggi.
Current favorite song.
Mohitha: Often – by The Weekend!
Candle light dinner or a long drive?
Mohitha: Candle light dinner, long drives make me motion sick!!
One thing that turns you on in a guy, and one thing that turns you off.
Mohitha: Turns me on- spontaneity. Turns me off – a know it all.
Actress or director?
Mohitha: I would love to hold both titles one day.
If you could cast a big celebrity in your next film, who would it be?
What keeps you up at night, insecurity or ambition?
Now that we know more about Mohitha check out more on the upcoming short-film, Now and Then right here & don’t forget to donate: