Anushka Sharma takes giant strides as a producer with the success of Paatal Lok; to follow it up with genre-bending Bulbul


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In 2014, when Anushka Sharma was just six years into the industry and in a very good position as an actress, she decided to turn producer. She loved reading the script of ‘NH10’ and believed it was a film that should be made. The film was earlier supposed to go on floors with Freida Pinto and Rajkummar Rao playing the lead roles. It hit a roadblock when it could not find financers. When Anushka stepped in, the project not only became viable, it got a producer who was completely invested in it. ‘NH10’, released in early 2015, was a success and that gave Anushka and her partner, brother Karnesh Sharma to back more offbeat stories as a producer.

After ‘NH10’, Anushka and Karnesh, under their banner Clean Slate Films, produced ‘Phillauri’ (2017) and ‘Pari’ (2018). While ‘Phillauri’ was a fantasy comedy, ‘Pari’ was a supernatural horror film with a very dark theme. While ‘Phillauri’ was a moderate success, ‘Pari’ did not do very well commercially. Having said, both the films have reached out to a much larger audience upon their home video releases. What all these films brought to the fore was the zeal of a young producer who was willing to experiment and offer something fresh to the audience.

Anushka has not signed any film post the release of ‘Zero’ (2018). Apart from reading scripts, she utilized these two years in propelling her career as a producer forward. ‘Paatal Lok, the recently released digital show which has been getting rave reviews and tremendous appreciation from the audience, was her latest offering as a producer. The success of the show must surely have strengthened her resolve to produce the kind of content she believes in.

Up next is the feature-length film ‘Bulbul’, which was made for and will stream exclusively on a prominent digital platform. The film, directed by Anvita Dutt, is said to be a mix of genres that has horror at the core of it. Touted to be a fantasy period family drama with a tinge of horror, it seems to be yet another project that would Anushka’s eclectic choices as a producer and her inclination towards scripts that offer something new and unusual.


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