Dr. Ravi & Mr. Hyde
|If the strange name doesn’t catch your attention, the man behind the movie will!|
He is a busy, successful doctor, happily married to an equally successful physician wife, a kid in tow living the quintessential American dream, yet Ravi Godse isn’t happy. There is something missing, like a pesky itch that won’t go away and can’t be scratched.
He has already dabbled in other stuff – written a book with a quirky name Two Girls, Three Guys and a Mad Professor. But the book isn’t selling. So what is a doc to do – make a film, what else?
And so Doctor Ravi becomes Dr Hyde as he moonlights as a man with a mad mission: to make a movie! The path to living your dream never runs smooth and so scattered as stumbling blocks on his way are an unsupportive wife, an agent who isn’t doing his job, plenty of hare brained schemes that includes a trip to South Africa, run in with the law and much more.
What do his brethren in medical arms think of his film making obsession? Who knows – they are busy hiding in nooks and cracks of the hospital Ravi works for each time he tries to hit on them for funding.
An internal medicine specialist in real life as well, with a quirky sense of humor and a penchant for word play, the real Dr. Ravi Godse is a prolific history buff and novelist, who decided to go where few docs have gone before – write, direct and act in his own movie. “I used to be friends with a very famous Bollywood actress who is Marathi like me. Her parents were very conservative and when she went for film shoots I was her chaperone. I ended up learning camera angles and even Urdu when she took lessons while escorting her around,” says Godse.
The knowledge of Urdu facilitated some amazing hospitality in Pakistan when he went there to take his exams to come to the U.S. in the mid 90s and the knowledge of camera angles gave Godse the courage to try and make his own film. It took five months of research, homework and a stint at a film school. The film was shot in six days, including a trip to Africa. All the actors in the film are friends.
The movie has made the film festival rounds. “The wackiest comment I got was from the Chairman of Sony Asia that the movie reminded him of Annie Hall. I don’t know if that’s true, but hey I don’t mind the comparison!’ says Godse laughing.
Just goes to show the face of Indian entrepreneurship is changing. “A few years ago if I had tried doing this in India – been a super successful doc and said I was attending film school, I would have been the laughing stock. Today in all the parties, the fact I have made my own film is a show stopper!” says Godse who is working on a new script. Looks like he may be moonlighting as a doc!