Amole Gupte loves to shoot on location with children. His new eagerly awaited film Sniff!
was shot at the prestigious St Mary’s School in Mumbai. Not only did Amole choose this 153-year old school to shoot the film he also conducted acting workshops with the students and brought into service the presence of the school’s very talented boys in front of the camera.
Surprisingly the school’s principal has written an appreciative letter to the students’ parents expressing joy at how Amole shot his film on the school’s premises.
The letter states, “Over the course of last year Mr. Amole Gupteoffered to conduct acting workshops free of cost in our school and was keen that some of our boys and teachers get a chance to become part of this beautiful movie .The workshops conducted by Amole covered Art, Theatre and Cinema.Our children who attended these workshops were shown movies of Charlie Chaplin and some Beautiful Iranian movies. Children were encouraged to enact small skits and were given a few voice exercises .The boys who were selected for the movie were very much a part of these workshops.The director took care of the fact that the shootings for our boys were held ONLY on weekends and during their vacation and none missed out on their school academics.”
The school principal Father Dr Francis Swamy further reveals hwomuch Amole ensured the students’ comfort while shooting. “On the day of the shoots, a small detailed narration was given to the boys. On the mornings of the shoot Amole would personally sit with the boys and explain the scenes to them thus creating beautiful moments and capturing their natural expressions.With our boys, teachers and our beautiful campus ,actual infrastructure and NOT film sets, being an integral part of this wonderful movie it definitely makes “SNIFF” – A MUST WATCH for all ages in the family.”
Amole says he is always particular while shooting with children. “If you remember, when I was the chairperson of the Children’s Film Society I fought for and obtained a time-limit on the number of hours children work on television and in cinema.When I work with my children I ensure they are comfortable and never force them to give shots.I shoot according to their natural clock.Shooting at St Mary’s gave me a chance to get to know and work with wonderful bright and talented boys. For me cinema is not just about what goes on camera. It’s more about what happens when the cameras are not looking, about getting to know young minds.”