Director Bharatbala tells Sudhish Kamath why he decided to go with Auro 3D sound for his Maryan, set to hit the screens this Friday

If you are yet to book tickets for the much-awaited Dhanush-starrer Maryan releasing this Friday, make sure you catch it in a theatre with Auro 3D sound if you want to experience it the way the makers want you to.

You can tell the commitment of a filmmaker from the importance he pays to sound. And director Bharatbala is keen that we watch Maryan in Auro 3D sound equipped halls because he believes that the sound will transport you into the world of Maryan. While many theatres are opting for Dolby Atmos (the 7.1 sound platform that lets you place sound objects anywhere inside the hall with its 64 speaker set up), Bharatbala has opted for the 11.1 channel based Auro 3D sound that captures the finer aspects of height based sounds.

After a demo of 3D sound technology and how it works, followed by the theatrical trailer, Bharatbala spoke to us about his decision to go with Auro.

An immersive experience

“Auro is well-entrenched and is available in more screens in Tamil Nadu,” says Bharatbala. “The quality of sound, especially live sound, makes the experience so realistic and dynamic because we captured even the background sound live on location. I could feel the location come alive when we were mixing. Auro helped me realise the landscape of the film and made it an immersive experience,” he explains.

Since Auro technology uses fewer speakers and is simpler to install, more screens in the state had started installing them, encouraged by Kamal Haasan, who persuaded theatre owners to release Vishwaroopam in Auro 3D.

Maryan is the first Tamil film to mix native sound in the Auro 3D format, says Bharatbala. Did the film’s sound demand this technology since not many films exploit sound in the first place? “You will find three different contrasting uses of sound in the film. First, in the fishing village and the feel of the ocean surface, then deep into the desert and the sonic sounds and textures of the ocean, 50-55 feet under the water. So you will feel and hear the landscape all around you.”

Like most technology, 3D sound too needs to be used right, he adds. “You have to sensitively use it. Not just because you have a kuthu paattu and you want to blast it from the speakers above. It’s all about how realistically you can design it to immerse the audience into the film,” says Bharatbala.

Maryan’s sound was mixed at A.R. Rahman’s AM Studios, that recently signed an agreement with Barco to enhance its audio post-production facilities.

Only about 27 screens in Tamil Nadu are currently equipped with Auro By Barco systems. “But like how people went and watched Avatar or Life of Pi in 2D and 3D or IMAX for the second or third time and got a different experience, audience who are hungry to get the experience of 3D sound will go watch it again. It's worth watching again just for the sound.”