Tuesday, January 01, 2013

Where the heck did 2012 go?

Wow...seriously, when the bloody heck did 2012 fly by? It freakin' feels like last night when exactly 364 days ago we were beset by a severe storm shutting down the power of our city, forcing us to open our eyes to darkness and mayhem on January 1st, 2012. But anyways, that's not the point. The point is, this so-called thing called TIME just whizzed past us, leaving us dumb-founded and as lost as a stray on the highway. So many things happened at break-neck speed that we didn't even realize when and where these days slipped by us. As they say, 'Life is what happens when you are busy doing other things'... But one thing is for sure, we got a bloody short life that there's no reason for us to compromise on the things we truly love. Whewwww! Ok, without rambling too much on the philosophical aspect of things, we'll just reminisce a bit on 2012.
I guess 2012 was a rolla-costa year...full of inspiring, adrenaline-packed stuff. We completed 2 projects - Metroxical New York(our latest feature documentary film) and 500 & 5(our first feature length narrative film project in Tamil), made some crazy artwork, travelled 8000 kms to parts of India that seemed like another planet(Ladakh, Himachal, J&K), did a dangerous(no kidding) trek to Kheer Ganga, climbed 16000 feet, met other whacked-out Nomads(from Uruguay, Sweden, France, London, Israel, Tibet, US) like us, met the Dalai Lama(sat through a little during his teaching), volunteered to teach and interact at SECMOL(Students' Educational and Cultural Movement of Ladakh) teaching Ladakhi students Science, Maths and English, did a mini documentary film for them, met the awesome and humble Sonam Wangchuk(rumoured to be the real life Phunsukh Wangdu, a character played by Aamir Khan in 3 Idiots, the hindi film), attended the world premiere of 500 & 5 at IFFK, Trivandrum and a ton of other stuff. 
Most importantly, it was the people and friends who made it for us. People who inspired us with their minds, their creativity and amazing personalities. It's only when we interact with people like them, we truly feel we are all connected and are directed by this collective consciousness. Anyways, since some of you couldn't come for the film festival premiere and have been asking about it, a little update on that - We had 2 shows in total. The first one at Anjali Theater was pretty decent and the second one at Kalabhavan theater was ok, not bad. But the good thing is that, we had a lot of our other awesome friends at the festival who came out to support us. A special thanks to all our actors and crew who helped in bringing 500 & 5 to life. I would love to share some of the reviews and feedback we got after the screenings, but I guess I'll wait until the next step.
We had some reasonable press coverage from The Hindu(here and here), The Indian Express(here) and other Malayalam Press/Media. The funny part was, in the Malayalam Manorama newspaper, there was a headline that said – “Cosmic Sex(the movie) is the result of my research” says Raghu – Apparently, I had directed the movie about sex and spirituality. Poor Amitabh Chakraborty, the actual director of the film - he had worked so hard on Cosmic Sex(interesting film) and I get the damn credit. But anyways, the world is never fair and true. We also met some amazing filmmakers from Iran, France, Chile, Mexico and Turkey & got to watch some awesome, crazy-ass whacked out movies. A few worth mentioning are Holy Motors(French), Sister(French), Nos Vemos Papa(Spanish), With you Without you(Sri Lankan), Ini Avan(Sri Lankan), Tungsten(Greek) among others. Moreover, we have some interesting developments happening around our film. And just a note, nothing...nothing comes easy to independent filmmakers. Will elaborate further later.
Also, last week I had gone to the Chennai Thiraipada Sangam(Chennai Film Society) organized by Mr. Vijayan in North Chennai where they regularly have guest filmmakers to teach/interact with their students. They had invited me last week for a session. It wasn't really a class, at least that's what I told them, that a class would serve no purpose...so we had more like a Q & A session revolving around filmmaking, cinema in general and 500 & 5's making and the production process. It was heartening to see lots of like-minded aspiring filmmakers who really felt the need for alternative cinema in Chennai. Some wanted to be directors, some cinematographers, some writers...and the class' age group ranged from 20 to 60. We had an energetic session as we explored what's really stopping independent, low-budget filmmakers from taking their next step. Met some interesting personalities who seem to give hope towards the future of Tamil cinema. Alright, that's that for now I guess. And I won't say Happy New Year because I hope we 'show' and don't 'tell'...

No comments: