Movies

‘24 Days’ is the realisation of the celluloid dreams of two Merchant Navy officers

Adith US (left) and Sreekanth EG

Adith US (left) and Sreekanth EG   | Photo Credit: Special arrangement

The film is about a young man’s journey to self-realisation, and was shortlisted at the Kerala State Film Awards 2019

What if their film is released in just one theatre in the state and has just one show? Sreekanth EG and Adith US are not cribbing. For these two Merchant Navy officers it was a dream-come-true when their film, 24 Days released in the capital city on Friday (January 17). “Independent filmmakers have never had it easy,” says Adith, who plays the protagonist and has co-written the story and script with Sreekanth, the director of the movie.

The film zooms in on the life of Stephen, an unemployed, selfish youth who goes on an impulsive road trip to the Himalayas with a riders’ group. But he gets expelled from the group and meets with an accident, which turns out to be life-changing, making him a better person, at peace with himself.

Sreekanth, who hails from Kannur, and Adith, a native of the city, had met at a naval institute in Pune. “Love for cinema brought us together. We took part in a mobile movie contest that won us the first prize, thus boosting our confidence. We also made a docu-fiction on our institute,” says Adith. They’ve shot two short films, “during their vacation from onboard training” — Will You Be Me? and I Am Flying. It was our interaction with several film personalities at the Cochin International Film Festival that inspired us to think big and make a feature film,” Adith adds.

A still from ‘24 Days’

A still from ‘24 Days’   | Photo Credit: Special arrangement

Since funds were short, help came from the Merchant Navy community itself. “It is a friends-funded project,” he says. They went on a one-year break from work to shoot the film and later took turns to take leave to finish the post production work.

“We learnt and did everything on our own. Thankfully we could use the best of facilities at Chitranjali studio although many people had tried to dissuade us. And when it came to releasing the movie, Kerala State Film Development Corporation was ready to give us a slot,” says Sreekanth.

The film has already won recognition at film festivals in Chile and Switzerland and was among the 20 films shortlisted at the Kerala State Film Awards 2019. “That was a big achievement considering we have had no experience or connection in the industry. We have worked with the best crew, be it camera, background score or sound design,” says Sreekanth.

Plans are on to release the film in theatres in Kannur and Kochi. “We want many to watch our work. We have made this out of our love for cinema and not to make money,” Adith says.

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Printable version | Feb 18, 2020 6:34:53 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/entertainment/movies/24-days-is-the-debut-project-of-two-merchant-navy-officers/article30585613.ece

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