By: Jesus “Solly” Olivares
The Underbug – Slamdance Breakout Selection Feature Film
About the Film: While nations came to a standstill during the pandemic, another more familiar kind of virus – xenophobia and sectarian violence – raged in India. Against that backdrop, “The Underbug” is a psychological horror that explores the psyche of people who live on the fringe of society. The film focuses on two men, who have stumbled on a deserted house where deadly trauma has clearly taken place, but what happened, who or what was responsible and are they next, are now the questions they need to solve in order to survive. A cinematic sibling to the style of Romero, filmmaker Shujaat Saudagar explores radical allegories reflecting relevant cultural and sociopolitical trends in the paranoid, fearful world of his characters. “The Underbug” delivers what great horror cinema does best: sparking conversation and debate, and offering insight on socio-politics in our current world, while keeping us on the edge of our seats with impending dread.
The Hollywood Times had the opportunity to speak with Director Shujaat Saudagar and two of the stars of the film Underbug Ali Fazal and Hussain Dalal. Enjoy the conversation here:
Logline: As India is ravaged by sectarian violence on the eve of its Independence Day, two rioters take refuge in an abandoned house. An eerie presence in the house, however, haunts the men to the edge of sanity.
Filmmaking Team & Stars: Starring Ali Fazal (“Victoria & Abdul,” “Death On The Nile”), and Hussain Dalal (“Brahmastra Part One: Shiva,” “2 States”), Directed by Shujaat Saudagar (“Jaadugar,” “Gulmohar”), Written by Shujaat Saudagar, Abbas Dalal (“Jalsa,” “Baaghi 2”), and Hussain Dalal, Produced by Vikesh Bhutani (“Gehraiyaan,” “Gully Boy”), Shujaat Saudagar, and Aman Mann (Oscar 2023 Shortlist “All That Breathes,” “Airborne”), Executive Producers Shaunak Sen (Oscar 2023 Shortlist “All That Breathes,” “Cities of Sleep”), Richa Chadha (“Gangs of Wasseypur,” “Masaan”), Ali Fazal, Hussain Dalal & Abbas Dalal.
Running Time: 68 Minutes In Hindi with subtitles
Slamdance Screening Times:
Location: Slamdance Film Festival Headquarters
Treasure Mountain Inn
255 Main St.
Park City, UT