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Updated: October 10, 2013 16:16 IST

On location: The politics of romance

Vijay George
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Fahadh Faasil and Amala Paul in Oru Indian Pranayakatha.
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Fahadh Faasil and Amala Paul in Oru Indian Pranayakatha.

Sathyan Anthikkad’s Oru Indian Pranayakatha is a love story that unfolds against the backdrop of the aspirations of a wannabe politician.

A young khadi-clad politician, Aymanam Sidharthan, walks into a television news room to participate in a discussion. He first seeks the blessing of a senior politician Uthup Vallikkadan. Before the proceedings start, he gulps down a glass of water in a huff.

It is the shooting of a song-cut at the location of director Sathyan Anthikkad's Oru Indian Pranayakatha. The interiors of an old godown at Vadavathoor in Kottayam has been converted into a TV newsroom.

“Perhaps this is a fresh step for me considering that the lead actors are Fahadh Faasil and Amala Paul, both of who are known for their roles in the kind of films that are not quite my forte. Oru Indian Pranayakatha is perhaps in the mould of my earlier films such as Sanmanassullavarkku Samadhanam or Gandhinagar Second Street. A few years ago, it’s the kind of film in which I would have cast Mohanlal. Of the new lot, I am impressed by Fahadh’s versatility,” says Sathyan.

Sidharthan is the local youth wing leader of a political outfit. Protégé of the district president of the party, Uthup (Innocent), Sidharthan hopes to make it big in politics.

“Uthup is eager to hop from one channel to another every evening as he believes that heated debates on television are an easy ticket to fame these days. This is Sidharthan’s first discussion on television,” says the director.

A Member of the Legislative Assembly is ailing and Sidharthan hopes that he would get the seat if a by-election takes place. But when it actually happens, a woman candidate is fielded by the party. A crestfallen Sidharthan drifts away from the party. “The film has politics as its backdrop, but this is essentially a love story,” says the director, whose politics-based family drama Sandesham remains a landmark in Malayalam cinema.

Quiz Fahadh Faasil on how it is playing a local politician who is quite unlike his real self and he says: “I have never felt that any character that I have done until now has any relation to my real self, save for, perhaps, Rasool in Annayum Rsaoolum. This character is an out and out Sathyan Anthikkad hero and this story is about some good people. I am thrilled to be part of this.”

He adds: “ Sidharthan is an ambitious chap. In fact, with an eye on a secure future, he falls in love with a girl from a wealthy family. He wants her to be employed because he feels that it is a trend in politics to have wives who are employed. He also learns Hindi to impress the national leaders of his party. It is all fun,” he adds.

Amala plays the female lead, Irene, a Canadian citizen of Malayali origin. She has come to make a documentary and Sidharthan helps her in the process. At some point, he realises that she has come with an agenda and through their interactions, a romance blossoms.

Oru Indian Pranayakatha, being produced under the banner of Central Pictures, will hit cinemas during Christmas. Scenarist is Iqbal Kuttippuram, cinematographer is Pradeep Nair and music composer is Vidyasagar. Stills are by Momi.

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