By Jagmeeta Thind Joy
Do you remember the Diljit Dosanjh and Neeru Bajwa starrer ‘Jatt and Juliet’? The blockbuster Punjabi film which drew audiences back to theatres in 2012 has been rightly credited for reviving interest in the Punjabi film industry. White Hill Studios, the production company that set the wheels in motion has since then rolled out an array of hit films like ‘Jatt and Juliet 2’, ‘Punjab 1984’ (the film won the National Award for Best Feature Film in Punjabi in 2014), ‘Sardaarji 1 & 2’, ‘Carry on Jatta 1 & 2’ and ‘Muklawa, to list a few. Founded by Manmord Sidhu, White Hill Studios has since then also ventured into film distribution, marketing and music production as well. Many in the Punjabi film industry believe that Sidhu is the man with the Midas touch. “It’s been a successful innings indeed and we are lucky to have an appreciative audience that spans the globe,” says Sidhu.
The Indo-Canadian film producer, director and distributor, was all of 20 years when he moved to Vancouver with his family. “I was always interested in the creative arts and studied at the Vancouver Film School as well,” says Sidhu who works out of Canada and Chandigarh now. We met up with him at the 20th anniversary celebrations of ‘The Perfect Smile Dental Clinic’ in Sector 35, Chandigarh, spearheaded by award-winning doctor duo – Dr Sarabjeet Singh and Dr Navreet Sandhu. The occasion also saw him launch a booklet put together by the dentists on ‘How to keep your teeth healthy’.
Sidhu who made his directorial debut with the film ‘Best of Luck’ believes the Punjabi film industry has a global appeal but good and relevant content is the key to its success. “There was a phase of just comedies but that’s fast changing. Today, there are many theme-based movies that are being made and those with a social message,” says Sidhu who is already working on three projects that star actors like Sonam Bajwa, Diljeet Dosanjh and Ammy Virk. “There’s no dearth of good content or writers in Punjab. I am very keen to make a film on Sikh history. A project like this requires a big budget and good script. I hope to produce a film soon that explores a strong character in history from our region,” says Sidhu who has also produced short films and web series in the past. “There is potential for both and we would be producing a new web series soon,” he shares.
For Dr Sarabjeet Singh and his wife Dr Navreet Sandhu who are celebrating 20 years of their dental practice in the city, Manmord Sidhu was the perfect choice for formally unveiling their guide to good dental care booklet. “He has been our patient for Speedo Orthodontics and it’s a delight to see him as a role model not just for dental care but also physical fitness and hard work,” remarked Dr Singh who is a leading orthodontist and specialises in ‘Speedo Orthodontics’ while Dr Navreet Sandhu is a prosthodontist.
With dental hygiene increasingly becoming a cause of worry, this award-winning dentist duo is keen to spread awareness about timely and quality treatments. “It’s been a long journey for us as well. We credit our success to nothing but hard work and also staying abreast of the latest technology and advances in the field,” said Dr Sandhu. The doctors recently held a daylong free clinic for students of the Blind Institute in Sector 26, Chandigarh as well.