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Independent filmmaker to unlock the secrets to success

Independent filmmaker and Mass Communications Masters student, Anubhav Srivastava

Independent filmmaker to unlock the secrets to success

Mass Communications Masters student defies critics to get influential individuals to spill the beans on their achievements

A 23-year-old Mass Communications Masters student from the University of Leicester is carving his own destiny – with the creation of an independent documentary film, Carve Your Destiny. Its aim is to reveal the secrets of success in the words of those in the know, conducting interviews with successful individuals across a range of disciplines from his native India and now from his new home, Leicester.

On announcement that Anubhav Srivastava would be pursuing the project solo, without the support of an institution or any financial backers, he was greeted with resistance and even disbelief: how could someone so young tackle such a big project and access such high profile individuals? Thankfully he has not let this adversity deter him; instead it has spurred him on to prove his doubters wrong.

“One of the major lessons I have learned from the personalities I have interviewed is the importance of self-belief. The only limits we have are the ones we set ourselves. I knew from the very beginning that I was working on a project that was very tough but was unique and added value. I have faced an enormous number of challenges and setbacks, but I knew my work would eventually be appreciated.”

And appreciated, it certainly has been; Anubhav has become somewhat of an ‘Internet celebrity’ since he began his project almost three years ago, with his venture featured in top Indian newspapers and amassing a whopping 30,000 followers for the Twitter channel of his currently unreleased film. Although, he still feels he has a long way to go before he will class the project, and indeed himself, as a success.

“Honestly speaking, I do not pay attention to such terms. Some people may be happy with such descriptions but if I become so, I shall become complacent and lose the drive to move further ahead. I have a very long way to go before I become a noteworthy individual in my own eyes.”

Anubhav conceived the idea of Carve Your Destiny whilst studying for his undergraduate degree in finance in his native New Delhi, India and began interviewing ‘super-achievers’ in hope that they will share their own knowledge and experiences of success to help viewers to become achievers themselves:

“The intention is to help people who wish to succeed in life but are consistently discouraged by people around them. I feel the most effective path to becoming successful is listening to those who have already succeeded, emulating what they did and then resolving to stay determined to achieve one’s goals.

“Through this film, I wish to bridge the gap between the masses and their role models with whom everyday people are unable to communicate. I believe there is a mentality to winning and that mentality is present in anyone who has excelled in their field. I pick role models from all fields and consistently aspire to utilise their winning strategies in my own life.”

Anubhav has already interviewed 10 well-known Indian personalities including Sushil Kumar, Olympic Medal Winner in Wrestling (Beijing 2008); Kiran Mazumdar Shaw who is the wealthiest woman in India and Sheila Dixit, the third time consecutively re-elected Chief Minister of New Delhi, the capital of India.

Other notable personalities include Deepak Puri, the founder of Moser Baer which is the second largest optical storage media manufacturer in the world; Ekta Chowdhry, Miss India Universe 2009 and Dr Kiran Bedi, the first Indian female police officer, a well-respected social activist, television personality and recipient of the Ramon Magsaysay Award (referred to as the Asian Nobel prize).

He is now seeking to expand his repertoire to encompass international achievers and is starting with his new academic institution, the University of Leicester. He has already conducted an interview with Sir Alec Jeffreys, the inventor of DNA fingerprinting and will soon be talking to Vice-Chancellor, Professor Sir Robert Burgess.

“Sir Alec and Sir Bob have both achieved immensely in their respective fields. Both of these figures are people I personally look up to ever since I arrived at the University of Leicester and therefore decided to approach them both for an interview.

“I feel the most effective path to becoming successful is listening to those who have already succeeded, emulating what they did and then resolving to stay determined to achieve one’s goals.”

As for where Anubhav sees his future goals, his is cautious to define any concrete plans, having already swapped a career in finance for the media as a result of the experience this documentary has garnered:

“I have not set a rigid career path for myself for I believe that limits creativity and possibilities for an individual. I have, however, resolved that I should excel in whichever field I choose. At the moment, my entire focus is on my film. Once I complete it, I intend to use it as a stepping stone for my future goals. Ultimately, whatever field I choose, my goal shall be to contribute to something worthwhile to the world.”

To visit the film’s website, click here.

Amy Cory

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