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IN STEP WITH THE STORYLINE: Diya and Vineeth, right, on the sets of the film `Rathri mazha.'
IN STEP WITH THE STORYLINE: Diya and Vineeth, right, on the sets of the film `Rathri mazha.'

G. JAYAKUMAR

`Rathri mazha,' directed by Lenin Rajendran, has Vineeth playing a dancer who becomes physically challenged after an accident.

In the middle of a hall, a huge stage has been set up with ramps on both sides. The walls of the hall are covered with black cloth and portraits of dancers in various dance poses are nailed to the wall. A young man in a wheelchair looks up expectedly at the stage. Two dancers, a male and female, enter the stage . They dance gracefully to the rhythm of a song based on a Hindustani raga, which is being played. The shooting for Lenin Rajendran's `Rathri mazha' is going on at Chitranjali Studios. From below the stage, ace cinematographer S. Kumar focusses his camera on the dancers on stage and the lone spectator in the wheel chair. The dancers are actors Ajeer and Diya, and the person in the wheel chair is dancer-actor Vineeth. The song played is by Ramesh Narayan, who is also the film's music director. The choreographer Madhu Gopinath shouts instructions to the dancers on stage. Lenin Rajendran takes over when Madhu is satisfied with their steps. The cameraman, S. Kumar, begins by taking long shots of the dancers from below and then moves on to the stage for close-ups. Lenin agrees to Kumar's suggestion of retakes of certain shots. Scripted by Lenin, Vineeth plays Harikrishnan, a dancer who becomes physically challenged owing to an accident. He, however, retains his passion for dance. In the shot that is being canned, he is overseeing the dance rehearsal of a dance-art production he has conceived. The film was earlier titled `Nilavu.' When queried about the change of name, Lenin Rajendran smiled and said, "It is now `Rathri mazha.' But the story is almost the same. Vineeth being a good dancer, I thought, would be suited for the role." Lenin added that the coming monsoon would be ideal for the release of the film.

Contemporary dance

Enthused by his role, Vineeth says, "It is the first time I am doing a contemporary style of dance. Trained in Bharatanatyam, it is a new experience for me. I am training hard for the role."For Diya, who is also a trained dancer, the role will help showcase her dancing prowess. "As a dancer, I feel this is an excellent role. Dance has been a passion since childhood. This is the opportunity that I have been waiting for. I have done six to seven Tamil films and one in Telugu. Till now I never got an opportunity to express my talent in contemporary dance," she says.The cast includes Meera Jasmine, Lalu Alex, Manoj K. Jayan, Jagathy Sreekumar and Chitra Iyer. The art director is Kollam Suresh. Lyrics are by Kaithapram Damodaran Nambudiri. The songs have been sung by Sujatha, Gayathri, Hariharan and Srinivasan. The film is produced by Green Cinema Productions.


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