A young filmmaker’s thought-provoking movie on the Indian farming scenario

anshul sinha, mitti
Anshul Sinha

The heart-touching and thought-provoking concept of Mitti-Back to the roots has been receiving a rapturous reception. Teja Kovvali interacted with the film’s director, Anshul Sinha.

Today, farmer suicides stand among the biggest worries that need to be addressed in our country. Mitti, with an engaging plot that weaves through its core theme, showcases multiple facets of the current farming scenario in India. And contrary to the films that just expose a problem without trying to address it, Mitti also suggests a few smart practices that could reap better results.

How did the film begin?

Making social documentaries since 2012, Anshul always held a penchant for bringing social issues to light through his films and collaborate with eminent nation builders for the same.

Mitti traces its roots back to 2015 when the young filmmaker met agricultural scientist Dr. G.V Ramanjaneyulu at an event in Hyderabad, and the latter had agreed to help him in making a film on the farmer crisis. “Our team started off with a 3-month-long theoretical research which was followed by a thorough field study. I then learned farming and agriculture science to gain keener insights on farmer suicides,” shares Anshul.

The film’s journey

A rigorous groundwork and a tightly-knit script, however, didn’t mean a smooth transit to the filmmaking process. Anshul was posed by several challenges, of which a limited crew and shortage of funds proved to be the major ones. It took a concerted effort by around 120 individuals and a bunch of NGOs to get the film on floors in 2017.

After releasing on 24 December last year, Mitti has been screened at numerous venues across the world. On the one hand, while the farmers from rural areas have come out all praise for the director’s vision, the urban crowd has stepped forward to take up the onus of dubbing the film into the local languages. In fact, apart from being screened with German and Spanish subtitles, the film has also managed to go on a dream run in countries like the USA and Greece. The film’s Telugu version recently debuted at a special screening organized by the Vizag Film Society.

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