Hope is spearheaded by Gauri and Balki. With years of experience in the world of advertising, their expertise in communication combined with their film making skills have resulted in simple, highly engaging, nuanced and differentiated creations sometimes on very complex subjects. It’s all about keeping it simple and fresh at Hope.
Gauri Shinde made her feature film debut with English Vinglish, which she wrote and directed. A film that marked the comeback of one of the greatest actors ever, Sridevi. Gauri began her career as an advertising copy writer and soon switched to her true calling, films. After a few years at the films division of Lowe Lintas, she started her independent film making career directing over a hundred iconic commercials for Havells, Tanishq, LG, Axis Bank, ITC, Unilever, P&G, Tata Group, Byjus, A23 and various other brands. Her narrative skills, ability to draw extremely candid performances, and belief in a simple and elegant visual style, have been her greatest strengths, which was apparent even in her very first Short film ‘Oh Man’ that premiered at the Berlin International Film Festival.
After the world wide success of English Vinglish, which premiered at the prestigious Toronto International Film Festival 2012 to a standing ovation, Gauri wrote, directed and co produced Dear Zindagi starring Alia Bhatt and Shahrukh Khan. Presently, she continues to direct commercials, and her third feature will be going on the floors shortly.
R Balki made his feature film debut with Cheeni Kum, starring Amitabh Bachchan, Tabu, Zohra Sehgal and Paresh Rawal, He wrote and directed this film while he was Chairman and Creative Head of Lowe Lintas, the advertising agency. Though always wanting to be a film maker, Balki’s addiction to advertising made him spend over 27 years in the business, leading India’s most talented team of communication specialists to create work for hundreds of iconic brands like Idea cellular, Tata Tea, Havells, Tanishq, Unilever brands like-Surf Excel, Lifebuoy, Fair & Lovely, Britannia, Bajaj, LG, Saint Gobain, MRF, Axis Bank, ICICI etc etc etc. And finally, when the de-addiction process began, Cheeni Kum was followed by Paa, Shamitabh, Ki&Ka and Padman. Thereafter, Balki wrote and creatively steered Mission Mangal, the directorial debut of his long-term associate Jagan Shakti.
Balki’s most recent feature, ‘Chup’ released on 23rd September 2022. The film won two awards at the Dadasaheb Phalke Awards 2023:-
1. Best Director – R Balki
2. Best Actor in a Negative Roll – Dulquer Salmaan.
Balki’s next, ’Ghoomer’ is already in post production.
Anil Naidu started his career as an editor and went on to edit hundreds of iconic commercials for some of the best directors in the country. He then opened his own advertising production house and directed hundreds of commercials and major Television shows. Naidu made his feature film debut as an editor with Paa. After heading the films division of Lowe Lintas, Naidu joined Hope to partner Gauri and Balki. Being an editor and director himself, Naidu’s approach to production has set new benchmarks in the industry in efficiency, transparency, creativity and relationship management. It’s this talent that has ensured that films like Ki&Ka, Shamitabh, Padman and Mission Mangal have been produced the way they have been, at the budgets they have been.
Today Naidu is not with us in person, but he will always be the guiding force behind everything that Hope creates. Chup was his dream project and we hope he sees it and likes it from wherever he is!
Pranab Kapadia has theatrically released 170+ films since the inception of his career over two decades ago. He started off as a TV professional in Mumbai with Zee TV, then moving to UK to head Network Operations for Zee International, further migrating to Filmed Entertainment by setting up UK subsidiary of leading Indian Studio, Reliance owned Adlabs, to heading International Business for NYSE listed Indian Film Entertainment company Eros International as President Distribution. It was here at Eros that Pranab allied with Hope Productions when he distributed English Vinglish. Pranab is now on board with Hope as a consultant and Co-Producer, kicking off with Balki’s feature films Chup and Ghoomer.
Pranab’s strength comprises of content creation & distribution across platforms. He also has a wonderful understanding of the entertainment needs of a South Asian consumer, internationally. All this, along with his deep-rooted network of contacts and endorsements of both, the creative and business fraternity of the Indian film industry make him a unique addition to the team!
Anirudh Sharma made a successful foray into the world of advertising – after an MBA, and a film-making degree from NYFA. He started as a Chief AD and Director at Dungarpur Films. He then journeyed into Production as a Senior Creative Producer at Lowe Lintas followed by a position of Regional Creative Producer at Leo Burnett. Anirudh has been an integral part of some award-winning campaigns – Ariel ‘#ShareTheLoad’ directed by Gauri Shinde ; Dove ‘Let’s break the rules of beauty’ directed by Pan Nalin. He has produced multifarious ad films at Offroad Films and Native Films. Now, he brings his skill set to Hope Productions.
As Anil Naidu’s protégé, it is only natural that Anirudh’s working style is a reflection of that of Naidus’. His strengths as Head of Production at Hope include a multidisciplinary approach, transparency, creativity and relationship management – along with his impeccable experience, making him a valuable addition to our team of Hope!