FRIDAY REVIEW

Social drama

SCENE ONE: A sentimental scene between father and son. Location: Mirra Hospital in Miyapur. Ranganath as the doting father and Siva Balaji as the dutiful son enact a heart-rending scene for Yashwanti Art Movies maiden venture "Kumkuma", directed by Jyothindranath Vemuri.

It is the last scene in the final schedule. So everybody is completely immersed in work and looking very busy.

Producers B. Madhusudhan Reddy and K. Venkatrama Naidu expressed happiness as the shoot is progressing according to plan and the budget is very much under control.

"Full credit to the director that the product is shaping up so well," he says.

Scene Two: Takes place at the post-production centre a few days later. Location: Magic Eye dubbing theatre, Srinagar Colony.

Siva Balaji is at the mike watching the scenes he enacted on the monitor. Director Jyothi Kumar a.k.a. Jyothindranath is in the control room sitting next to the sound engineer at the mixer. The mike in the anteroom (where Siva Balaji is dubbing) is directly connected to the mixer. As the scenes are played on the television screen, images of the film's other hero Jayanth and the heroine Seema run through with that of Siva Balaji.

Looking at his dialogue sheet, the hero delivers his dialogue to sync with his lip movement on the monitor, reliving the emotions that he had carried effortlessly while performing the role. The director guides him, pressing the `talk back' button on the mixer table and says okay when the actor does the job satisfactorily. Of course, the vigilant sound engineer is there to manipulate the voice wherever necessary through the computerised mixer to get that right feel for the sequence. The recorded voice is simultaneously transported to the hard disc.

It is tea break. Jyothindra has a track record of working with as many as 45 directors in various capacities - from N.T. Ramarao and Dasari to Jayanth Paranjpe. His repertoire as a director include, "Vidhata", "Kauravudu", "Prema Sakshiga", and "Ammayi Navvithe". He won a Nandi Award as best director for his tele film "Mr. Millennium", in 2001.

With "Kumkuma' he is starting his career afresh. "I believe in a progressive stance in the work of arts, be it literature or films. My films endorse this as besides entertaining they have a strong message. My current venture focuses on how even in today's society, people still follow orthodox views when it comes to basic issues and rights concerning women. For a Hindu woman, sporting a `bindi' is a birthright. But when a woman becomes a widow, she is not allowed to wear it. Why this anomaly? This is still being practised. No one has the right to dictate terms. Based on this concept I wrote a story and hence the title," says the director. Siva Balaji is cast in the role of a fashion designer and Jayanth, a neurosurgeon. Seema plays a a gynaecologist.

"I shot the entire film including the songs in just 33 days," informs Jyothindra. "The story revolves around the above three characters. It takes unusual twists and turns once Siva Balaji enters the life of the other two. One thing I can proudly say is that my films are sans vulgarity. And there was never a censor cut in my films. I focus on wholesome entertainment," he says and adds that Ghantadi Krishna's fabulous music and Swarna Babu's excellent choreography are value additions to his comeback vehicle. "Kumkuma" is presented by Dr. Chandra Madhusudan and be released towards the end of April.

M. L. NARASIMHAM

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