Renowned Bollywood choreographer Bosco Leslie Martis is making his feature film directorial debut with Rocket Gang. The dance-horror-comedy film starring Aditya Seal and Nikita Dutta in the leads along with an ensemble of kids and youngsters will be released on 11 November 2022. The trio thinks that everything about the film is special including its release date. They share the ups and downs of making the special film during the covid pandemic.
The filming of Rocket Gang had to be stopped multiple times because of the pandemic. How did you deal with the uncertainties and anxieties?
Bosco Martis: I waited for eleven years to make my first film. 18th March 2020 was supposed to be the first day of Rocket Gang’s filming. But on the same day, the nationwide lockdown came into effect. And it took a lot more time than expected for the work to resume. We had to break the set. My production designer was in tears when he told me about it. But I believed that God has planned something for us. There’s always a solution. The world started to open after the first four months of the pandemic and I knew that I was going to make my dream come true.
Nikita Dutta: As actors, we always live a slightly insecure life. Things are never permanent for us. People were working from home during the pandemic but that was not the case for us. There was a lot of stress and the uncertainty hit badly.
But Bosco Sir had gathered himself because he believed so strongly in this film. He started doing Zoom calls with us. We started working on our characters and got to know each other well. So, somewhere that gave us the surety that the film is going to happen even if it takes time.
They say that God has a plan for everyone. After the first schedule, Bosco Sir got covid. After the second schedule, all of us got covid. But I think we were rushing through, and it was God’s way of telling us to slow down.
Bosco Martis: Absolutely. This film has some special angels covering it. Look at the release date 11.11.22.
Aditya Seal: I lost my father during covid. It’s depressing to sit in a room without any other thoughts. Shooting this film took me away from all the negative thoughts I was having at that time. I stepped into a different world. And I subconsciously wanted to be taken away from reality and into a fantasy where everything was all right. Because whenever all of us met, it was fun and entertaining. Although the times were tough, we made the film with a lot of love and laughter.
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Tell me about the characters that you play in the film.
Nikita Dutta: I play Tania who is a strong-headed girl who practices and teaches yoga. She is in love with Amarbir played by Aditya. She is trying to keep her life on track but struggles because of her relationship with Amarbir. Eventually, it’s a group of five friends. They have an event in their lives that changes them from within. My character and the film will leave the audience with a smile.
Aditya Seal: I play Amarbir who is drastically opposite to Tania. He wants to become an actor but doesn’t want to work hard. He’s self-centered and not serious about his career or relationship. But an incident makes him grow up.
Nikita, this is the first time you’re doing a full-fledged song and dance film. What was that experience like?
Nikita Dutta: That was one of the reasons why I said yes to the film. That was my biggest temptation. In my previous films, the songs that I had done were slow romantic tracks. I had never got to dance. I like dancing but I was not trained. So, I was happy to know that I will get to learn dancing in this film.
How was the experience of shooting the film in the Konkan region of Maharashtra?
Aditya Seal: We started our schedule in Konkan. This was the first time in my life that I saw dolphins in a natural environment.
Bosco Martis: What an experience it was. We shot with dolphins at Tarkarli Beach in Konkan.
Nikita Dutta: We were privileged and fortunate to get that location. Because initially, we were not sure where was he [Bosco] taking us for the shooting. But on the first day of the shoot, all of us were in awe of the location. We have seen Maldives, Mauritius, and Goa in films, but nobody has explored Konkan in films. And I think that’s a cool thing about our film.
Bosco Martis: I think once the film is a hit, we will go back there to party.
How are kids – the primary target audience of the film, responding to the trailer and songs? And what were your observations during your promotions in schools?
Bosco Martis: The daughter of a friend of mine was at one of our promotional events in the school where she studies. It was a crowd of some 500 kids so she could not meet me. My friend told me that all the kids were shouting “Nachoge Toh Bachoge”. He didn’t know that this was our film’s tagline. Then he asked me when my film was going to release. His daughter immediately told him, “Daddy you don’t understand? It’s 11.11.22.” I thought it has hit the right chord. That was our first victory.
Aditya Seal: When Bosco got that call from his friend, we knew that we were going in the right direction. That’s how we decide to amplify the film’s marketing.
Nikita Dutta: We have seen films like Raju Chacha, Mr. India, Chillar Party, Bhoothnath, etc. But it’s been a while since we made a children’s film. The target audience is huge. They deserve some good content. You blame children to watch other stuff because they don’t have anything else to watch.