Amit Sharma: A Director Who Dons Many Hats

Amit Sharma came across filmmaker Pradeep Sarkar with whom he worked on an advertisement as an actor and there has been no looking back since then.

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Amit Sharma, Co-Founder, Director and Producer, Chrome Pictures, was in Std XI when his mother asked him if he wants to pursue modelling as a career. Considering it a viable option, Sharma started meeting people in Delhi. That’s when he came across filmmaker Pradeep Sarkar with whom he worked on an advertisement as an actor. And there has been no looking back since then.

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Reminiscing his initial days, Sharma says, “I was in the first year of college when Dada started his own company. Soon, I lapped on the opportunity to work under him as Assistant AD. He was involved in everything, right from shoot to pre- and post- production, setting, costume and art direction.

Aleya Sen, Sharma’s partner in Chrome and now wife, joined Sarkar after two years. Remembering his meeting with Sen, Sharma says, “I don’t know what she saw in me but she was convinced that I could become a director. I started thinking towards that direction. At the age of 21, both of us directed a short film. And at 24, we started Chrome Pictures in 2004.”

Without any exposure in advertising, he started working on ads. Later, his first feature film came out in 2018 with ‘Badhaai Ho’, which garnered Rs 220.34 crore as on December 2018. Nevertheless, advertising is Sharma’s first love, he confesses. “I love making ads. I will never leave that. It keeps you on your toes. Advertising teaches you a lot of detailing. I learnt everything in advertising as I never assisted anybody on a feature film.”

Sharma is someone neither makes storyboards nor writes any shoots. “I listen to a script so many times that I remember every dialogue. I have an idea what I will do on the shoot but I don’t know what’s going to unfold on the sets; I just go with the flow, there. I rehearse all the roles of the actor myself. I need to feel it and check if it is affecting me. That’s my way,” he explains.

(This article was first published in the August 2019 issue of Entrepreneur Magazine. To subscribe, click here)