A selection of exceptional Tamil films is making its way to the U.K. for a festival to be held there from June 6 to 8. Arts University Bournemouth, one of the most creative colleges in the U.K. and home to one of the most prestigious film schools in the country, has announced its first South Indian Film Festival. It is being curated by North London-based Shashi Wilson-Joshi, a third-year film student and upcoming director.
“Our Festival is a one-off opportunity to see six U.K. and international premieres. South Asian cinema has been painfully under-represented in the West for too long. There is need to drastically reconsider the clichés and stereotypes associated with mainstream Bollywood,” says Shashi.
Among the films to be screened are Sutta Kadhai, Vidiyum Munn, Neethane En Ponvasantham, Mudhal Mudhal Mudhal Varai, Neram and Neer Paravai. The selection includes black comedies, romantic musicals and hard-hitting realistic films. But they have one thing in common — they are meaningful, intelligent films from South India.
“The screenings will be followed by Skype Q & As with cast and crew. We aim to start an important conversation with audiences and filmmakers surrounding the lack of recognition for Indian films, worldwide,” states Shashi. For details, about the fest, mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
Cricket and creativity
Cashing in on the current obsession with IPL and cricket, a tribute to Chennai Super Kings and its captain Dhoni, has been released in the online sphere. The brains behind ‘Dho Dho Dhoni’ are R. Kumar Narayanan and K. G. Sreenivasan’s Saintunes Creative Services. Kumar, founder-managing director of Saintunes, is a music composer, singer, sound engineer and graphic designer. Says Kumar: “Most labels look only at producing music. But, it also requires skill and expertise in other departments, particularly in sound-engineering and composing. That is where Saintunes plays a significant role.”
Another recent project of theirs is ‘Urgineyn’, which features numbers similar to film songs in style and composition. “‘Urgineyn’ serves as a precedent for upcoming talent to produce independent work in a cost-effective way. We are also working on a sound and design project for Ethirmarai, the first digital movie in Tamil,” says Kumar.
Long road to redemption
Centuries ago, surgeries used to be done without the aid of chloroform. Patients used to endure a lot of pain even as surgeons performed life-saving operations. “This was called ‘Rana chigilsai’ in Tamil; the system of undertaking such surgeries was known as Panduvam. In my film Panduvam, the title is a synonym for the hardship the hero undertakes to clear his name,” says director Keaton, who also plays a psychiatrist in the film. Hero Siddesh (of Appavi fame) plays a press reporter, while heroine Swasika essays a psychiatrist. Keaton, who has played the lead in another film, Maithanam, is the nephew of yesteryear actor Vagai Chandrashekar. Chandrashekar’s brother, Pandian was a producer and also designed posters and banners for almost 900 films.