“It was not a planned change,” he explains, while making it clear that he still splits his time 50-50 between his duties as a general partner at Redwood and his cinematic endeavors. “I met a couple of people who had graduated from UCLA and USC in film making. They were venturing out into the film business. I met them and got impressed with their background and what they wanted to do. So I decided to work with them.”
Together with Digvijay Singh and Mayank Chhaya, Singh founded Literate World, which is a publishing, media and cinema startup based in Fremont, CA. The idea behind the new company is to showcase new talent — publishing international books, producing TV programming and producing films through Kundalini Pictures, which is the new company’s cinema production arm.
Mr. Executive Producer
It is with director Digvijay Singh’s debut film “Maya” — produced by Kundalini Pictures — that Singh has made his first foray into the film industry. And it’s not a shabby start. Singh executive produced the film, which is in Hindi, and deals with child abuse. It was entered into a number of film festivals across the world and achieved considerable recognition — notably at the Toronto Film Festival, where it was first runner up behind “Amélie” and ahead of second runner up “Monsoon Wedding.” Singh seems to have enjoyed his experience with film festivals (he event took Maya to the celebrated Cannes Film Festival, where the film played in the circuit to court distributors but wasn’t entered in the competition).
“The high-tech industry is so much obsessed with progress, and money and competition. Whereas in the independent film industry you meet people with artistic minds, and they appreciate other people’s work,” says Singh. And he seems intent on entering fully into the world of cinema.
His second project came about when he met USC film graduate Somnath Sen. Sen wanted to do a movie and Singh decided to back him. The result is “Leela,” a film about cultural intricacies of the South Asian-American experience, that fuses Bollywood and Hollywood styles. “I didn’t know about the movie industry other than I had seen lots of movies,” he says.
“Now I know what it takes to do a movie from start to finish, and for my next project I want to produce my own by writing my own story and I want to direct it by myself.” Singh already has a synopsis ready and is studying screenwriting.