"it was a unanimous decision to select Gully Boy."
Gully Boy, which starred Ranveer Singh, has been announced as India’s official entry for the 2020 Oscars.
The hit film is about the homegrown rap scene in India which explores the struggles and triumphs of its protagonist Murad, played by Ranveer.
Gully Boy presents Murad’s story from the slums of Dharavi, Mumbai, to the centre stage of rap.
The film was chosen as the Indian entry for the Best International Feature Film at 2020 Oscars. The news was announced by Farhan Akhtar on September 21, 2019, who tweeted:
“Gully Boy has been selected as India’s official entry to the 92nd Oscar Awards.”
Alia Bhatt starred opposite Ranveer and plays his love interest. The film also featured Kalki Koechlin, Siddhant Chaturvedi and Vijay Raaz in supporting roles.
The film is inspired by the lives and work of renowned Indian rappers Naezy and DIVINE.
Kalki commented on the news: “Wow! That is just the best Saturday evening news!”
The Bollywood film was chosen from a list of 27 films. A selection committee led by actress and filmmaker Aparna Sen.
Film Federation of India secretary general Supran Sen explained:
“There were 27 films in the running this year but it was a unanimous decision to select Gully Boy.”
The film was co-produced by Farhan Akhtar and Ritesh Sidhwani. Farhan’s sister Zoya Akhtar directed the box office hit.
Not only was the film a success in India, but it also performed well internationally. It has already won numerous awards.
The film received the Promotion of Asian Cinema (NETPAC) Award at the 23rd Bucheon International Fantastic Film Festival (BIFAN) in South Korea.
It even won the Best Film Award at Indian Film Festival of Melbourne (IIFM), in 2019. The film also premiered at the Berlin Film Festival.
Zoya revealed that the news was unexpected when she received a message from Aparna.
She explained: “It was definitely not something I was expecting. It was completely out of the blue but very exciting since it was 4 days after Lust Stories at the Emmy’s.
“So, it’s been a great week. Don’t want this week to end!”
“It’s an opportunity that we have been given and now you’ve got to run with it and get the best.”
On whether the announcement feels like the ultimate form of acceptance and if she has a response to those hating on the film’s selection, Zoya stated that one cannot be negative otherwise they won’t be able to do anything.
The filmmaker added: “You know what, you can’t think that you can’t get into that because you won’t do anything.
“You just have to know that everyone has their highs and their lows in their career, some films work, and some films don’t, and you have to know that and hope for the best.”