First Bollywood film set in NZ premiered


The first Bollywood film set in New Zealand is about to have its premiere.

Filmed entirely in Auckland with local actors, Urban Turban is a traditional tale of boy meets girl, with a twist.

It has all the ingredients of a Bollywood flick; outlandish drama, a budding romance, misunderstandings, and broken dreams. But it’s all filmed in the city of sails.

Urban Turban is the story of a girl from Timaru and a boy from India who get together in Auckland before being torn apart by a dominating relative – a familiar story for many.

“For every Indian so to speak who comes here, every Indian has got a story,” says the film’s director Devesh Singh.

But this home-grown production didn’t get any of the tax incentives the government has just granted to Hollywood movies being made in New Zealand.

“We’ve showcased Auckland in such a nice way, I’m sure the council will like it, the government will love it, we didn’t get a single cent for it, but we’ve gone ahead and done it, we have not held ourselves back,” says Mr Singh.

He says the film was pulled together with favours and good intentions.

“A lot of borrowing and that’s how it happened otherwise it would not have been possible. A lot of people put a lot of time and effort absolutely for nothing,”

As well as a cast and crew who mostly have full-time day jobs.

“They took the opportunity we took the opportunity, collectively we got together and bingo – we got urban turban,” Mr Singh says.

Urban Turban has already got an online following of keen Bollywooders who are begging the company to release it.

But they’ll have to wait until March – it’ll premiere in Fiji, before heading back to New Zealand for one here.

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