|RS Prasanna - March/April Monthly Film Competition Finalist|
|Tuesday, 28 April 2009|
Prasanna tells us about his film 'How Ranga Plays a Girl'
It was the second day of shoot (of 3.5 days of shoot time) and we had a night shift (6pm to 2am) with a one hour break for dinner. We were to shoot the most complex sequence of the movie that night – the climax which occurs in the village performance stage under the Banyan tree. Apart from the audience (crowd) reactions and dialogues, we had to can the play itself, and the ensuing fight. As if this were not by itself a challenge to novices who were working on a crowd scene the first time in their life, the set construction guy gave us a shock by delaying our shoot by a neat two hours.
We could can out first shot only a little before the dinner break. Imagine. Doomsday loomed. We were all surely on a sinking boat, and I as the captain was gonna be drowned in shame!
True talent is tested, it is said, during crises. As a team we pulled together so bloody well that night that I have no qualms in saying that we genuinely were a talented bunch of team mates, who did not give up and worked hard to save the day (and the film). My DOP, ADS and actors were a gift from God.
The most important line which kept ringing in my ear throughout that night was a line I picked up from one of the mentors on the 'Gateway to Hollywood' show that I had recently been a part of: “Finish the film; Complete the story.”
My duty as a director that night was to do just that: tell the story. Out went the flashy shots, the gimmicky tricks of technique, and with it our egos. In came honest hard work, focus on story and action, and above all a sense of living through this crisis together as a team.
I will never forget the day. When I went on stage 3 months later to pick up the 'Best Director' Gold Medal from the hands of A R Rahman and other stalwarts, I silently dedicated the film to my exceptional team members who shared the award with me. Especially my brilliant DOP Kris Vasant and my pillars of strength, my Assistant Directors Vinodh and Satheesh apart from the delightful actors Uchit and Iswar.
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