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Aussie film inspired by Indian culture

IANS 16 Nov 2014, 12:36:17 PM IST
IANS

Kolkata: An Australian film, based on how lives can be saved with organ transplants, has drawn heavy inspiration from Indian culture and philosophy. Eminent Australian director Paul Cox's latest film 'Force of Destiny' is based on the personal experiences of the filmmaker himself.

Starring Bollywood actress Shahana Goswami and National-Award winner Seema Biswas besides 'Lord of the Rings' fame David Wenham, it was screened at the Kolkata International Film Festival.

"India has always been a source of inspiration for me for its culture, heritage, philosophy. I have tried to incorporate many elements of Indian culture in my film as it is a story of love, hope and miracle," said Cox, known for films like 'Man of Flowers' 'My First Wife', 'Exile', 'Innocence' and 'Human Touch'. A frequent visitor to India, his association to the country goes back to many decades when he made a 30-minute-long documentary on Kolkata titled 'Calcutta' during the late sixties. "I have been deeply influenced by India," the filmmaker said.

Besides Australia, the film was also shot in Kerala. 'Force of Destiny' is a fictionalised account of his experiences after he was diagnosed of liver cancer in 2009 and had only few months to live.

"I even saw my own obituary on Facebook," Cox recalled. It was during this time he started writing the script on his hospital bed, without any hope of living to see it being made.

But a miracle saved him as he found a liver donor after waiting for seven months. The jottings in his diary have been published in the form of 'Tales from the Cancer Ward' while a fictionalised account of it has been made into a film. 'Force of Destiny' is about the life of a famous sculptor Robert who is suffering from liver cancer. As he awaits death, he meets an Indian woman Maya whose love changes his life forever.

"I also hope that the film would raise awareness on the crucial importance of donating organs. There are lot of people who are waiting to be saved and many are dying because no one is donating. There cannot be any reason for not donating," the director said.

He said he was saved because a young man who had donated his organs died on a Christmas day. "He has travelled with me and will die once again with me," Cox remarked.