Movies

Fahadh Faasil was in his element in 'Carbon': Venu

Fahadh Faasil and Mamta Mohandas in a still from Carbon, directed by Venu

Fahadh Faasil and Mamta Mohandas in a still from Carbon, directed by Venu   | Photo Credit: special arrangement

Venu says 'Carbon' traces a youngster’s journey as he stumbles ahead to find his destination and purpose in life

Sibi Sebastian, a youngster chasing harebrained schemes to make a quick buck and make it big, is the protagonist of Venu’s new film, Carbon. When the film director is Venu and the actor is Fahadh Faasil, expectations are bound to be sky high. Both are riding waves of success. Cinematographer-turned-filmmaker Venu’s hard-hitting Mammootty-starrer Munnariyippu was one of the reel highlights of 2014 while Fahadh has had a triumphant 2017 with Thondimuthalum Driksakshayium and Take Off in Malayalam and Velaikkaran in Tamil.

Venu wanted Fahadh to play the lead in Carbon and the award-winning veteran does not believe in half-measures. So when the young actor took a break in the midst of his happening career, Venu was prepared to wait and when, at one point, the wait seemed to be getting prolonged, Venu says he did toy with the idea of shelving the film and working on another one.

Eventually, Fahadh himself called Venu up and asked if they could start working on the film. And, sure enough Carbon started rolling. “It was conceptualised and written with Fahadh in mind and I could not have made the film with someone else,” admits Venu during a telephonic interview.

Fitting the bill

“Only Fahadh could have been Sibi Sebastian. I think he is one of the finest actors we have now with us. He was in his element in the role. The film is about Sibi’s journey. In every family, there is a Sibi. Everyone else in the family is convinced that he is lazy and a wastrel. But he himself thinks otherwise.

“A loner at heart, Sibi is always making plans to strike it rich and is confident he is on the cusp of something big. He is forever trying to prove that he is a success. These days, to be successful, one must be seen to be successful in the eyes of society and Sibi’s attempt is to do that,” says Venu.

Fahadh Faasil in a still from Carbon, directed by Venu

Fahadh Faasil in a still from Carbon, directed by Venu   | Photo Credit: special arrangement

The tagline of the movie is Carbon – Ashes and Diamonds. So is Sibi a raw diamond? “You know, carbon, under tremendous pressure, turns into diamonds. The element in both is the same – Carbon. So, in a way, it is about a man who finds himself in his journey. Carbon follows in his footsteps as he meets people, tries out many kinds of jobs, his experiences and so on. For instance, when he works for a while as an estate manager, the film travels with him,” narrates Venu.

Nedumudi Venu, Mamta Mohandas, Praveena, Kochupreman, Vijayaraghavan, Dileesh Pothan, Soubin Shahir and Manikandan Achari are some of the actors in the film. Venu was keen on casting people who spoke fluent Malayalam as he was shooting sound in sync and there would be no dubbing.

Interesting roles

“And each of them has done well. Kochupreman has an unforgettable role and people who have seen the film were carried away by his acting. Spadikam George also enacts an interesting character,” vouches Venu.

Jhansi Tommy, who essays Fahadh’s mother in the film, is a complete newcomer from Kottayam, and Venu sounds pleased when he says that she could not have been bettered by anyone else.

Venu and K.U. Mohanan on the sets of Carbon

Venu and K.U. Mohanan on the sets of Carbon   | Photo Credit: special arrangement

Written by Venu himself, Carbon has been filmed by hot shot K.U. Mohanan, marking his re-entry into Malayalam with Carbon. Venu, the eyes behind many successful films in Malayalam, says he wanted someone with a fresh vision and different frames. Hence he persuaded Mohanan to join in as director of photography.

Serendipity brought in Vishal Bhardwaj as music composer of the film, his second with Venu after Daya, Venu’s maiden directorial venture. “Vishal is a good friend. It was Fahadh who persuaded me to ask Vishal if he would come in as music director for Carbon. Although I was a little reluctant, I did ask him and he immediately replied in the affirmative,” explains Venu.

Shot in Pala, Erumeli, and places in and around Kottayam among other places, the final scenes were shot in the jungles. Venu laughs when he admits that one does not know what works with the audience. “Nevertheless, it is a film I am happy about and would confidently request people to watch it,” he signs off.

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Printable version | Jun 4, 2020 1:49:09 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/entertainment/movies/venu-on-his-new-film-carbon-starring-fahadh-faasil/article22463673.ece

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