Ajita Suchitra Veera is a Film Director cum editor of Indian Cine-world and the founder of Imaginem Cinema Pvt. Limited, a young independent motion picture production company, born in Hyderabad and lives in Mumbai. She is not only a film director but a writer, producer, illustrator and a photographer also. She is a passionate innovator with creative impulse ideas and futuristic vision. Her debut feature film “Ballad Of Rustom,” which was in Oscar contention for Best Picture, was directed, collaborated, film edited and also produced by her. In short, the credit for all the success of this cinema goes to her creativity excellency. “
Ballad of Rustom” is the milestone of her career which was described as “A Powerful Cinema to graphic, poem, epic and Faustian by the jury and other film directors in the 61st International Film Festival Mannheim at Heidelberg in Germany, the oldest film festival parallel to Cannes.
In 2013, this movie got the Indibor Bose Award, and Ajita got the award for best direction at the 12th Osian Cinefan which was held in New Delhi for the same movie. In 2012, a short film “Notes On Her” directed by her was an official entry in Honorary Film Category in Oscar 2003. Ajita Suchitra Veera, the only child of Anjan Basu, who is a multi-talented person and
Usha Rani, who has turned to a banker from a journalist. Anjan Basu, the father of Ajita is a photographer, an illustrator, a cartoonist, a graphic designer and a journalist in parallel who had a private photo studio where she got introduced to a range of cameras and other scientific devices at a tender age of 5. These were fascinating for her and influenced her childhood a lot. She has spent much of her childhood in cutting artworks, doing design layouts and printing photographs in the studio of her father.
She was reading in NASR School Hyderabad where she got introduced to the legendary film director
Satyajit Ray - his cinemas and short stories greatly influenced her cinematic development afterward. Her parents were great lovers of world cinema, Hollywood classics, and Indian Art movies. They were taking Ajita with them to watch Hollywood movies in local cinema halls which influenced her childhood strongly. Even her maternal grandfather was a great lover of Hollywood classics and had owned theaters in the early 50’s showing Hollywood Classics. Her paternal grandfather was also a singer-actor and sculptor and did street theaters roaming in troupes. Her parents were also very much interested to make cinemas. So in one line, Art and Cinematography was in her blood. Ajita was very keen to read and watch detective stories.
“Doctor Zhivago” of Dr. Lean and the epic narratives and adventurous movies like “Butch Cassidy” and “Sundance Kid” fascinated her immensely. She was watching the works of several world cinema directors like Alfred Hitchcock, Sidney Pollack, Francois Truffaut, Robert Bresson, Jean-Luc Godand in local theaters and film clubs by renting their videos in Hyderabad after graduation. She was a brilliant student and graduated in science from St. Ann’s College Hyderabad. But her ultimate passion for cinema forced her to leave the stream and discontinue the education. She studied briefly about M.A Theatre Arts and the acting in plays in 1999 at Central University, Hyderabad. With a vast knowledge in acting and cinematography, she joined the prestigious Film and Television Institute of India, Pune from where she graduated and specialized in Film Direction. For the unconventional style of her short film, “Notes on her” was highly acclaimed by the critics in its Oscar entry in 2003.
Along with the nomination for Oscar, it was screened at the international film festivals such as the Cinefondation at Cannes, the Camerimage in Poland, the Budapest masterclass workshop for cinematography by Kodak in Hungary and also the Vigik international film festival in Moscow. Another short film “The Solitary Sandpiper,” her graduate film was her innovative work of specially processed techniques and distinctive palette of colors. The film is a definition of her keen interest in making of images in her cinemas. She was awarded as the Best Art Director Fiction at Festival Sicily in 2004 for this movie. Her documentary film “CHAOS” was a significant step in her filmmaking, which was an exploration of the inter-relationship between art and science. Before starting her own company she worked as a freelancer director on corporate videos and small promotional videos in 2005-2009. In 2009 she started her own company, known as Imaginem Cinema, where she created her greatly applauded maiden-cinema “Ballad of Rustom” in 2013.
In 2013, “Ballad of Rustom” was screened in International Film Festival Prague, Czech Republic. As a first Indian director, Ajita was invited to this European Festival in 20 long years along with the masters of world cinema such as Wim Wenders, Roman Polanski and Kristoff Zanussi. In 2013 it was also screened at the 17th International Film Festival in Kerela and International Film Festival Hauge, Netherland. Ajita has directed some short films such as Stereotype, A Short Film on Life, A Day in a Studio, Anaganaga and An Unnamed Poem. She was the writer of these films also. Some of her short features have also been screened in International Film Festivals like The Oberhausen Experimental Film Festival in Berlin, the Rio De Janeris International Short Film Festival, and the Clermont Ferrand in France and the International Documentary Film Festival in Japan. As a director, she has consciously worked in all her films, where there is no strict narrative logic rather they are based on reality and experimental works.
She uses high contrast lighting in her cinemas and short films which create the raw feel and stretches the limits of reality itself as she has done in “Notes on her.” Another short film by her “Images” was entirely a stream of images which strongly adheres to the tradition of silent movies. “The Isle” is a film based on the childhood memories acted by a beautiful actress. She has conducted an intensive filmmaking workshop from January 2006 to March 2009, introducing world cinema to IAS Students as a guest faculty in IAS Academy in Mussoorie resulting in a film made by the students. As per an interview with Ajita Suchitra Veera, a science fiction film is her dream project which she will make in the near future.