Films based on the lives of gangsters are nothing new. However, a film about a real-life gangster with the man in question playing the lead is entirely novel.
Trying this unique concept in their venture are gangster-turned-critic and script writer, Agni Sridhar and director Suri. The two have joined hands to make a film on the life of once notorious rowdy sheeter Silent Sunila. The film, also called Silent Sunila, made under the Megha Movies banner is produced by Srikanth, S Ravindra and K Sheshadri.
Explaining how the subject fell in his lap, Suri says that Agni Sridhar, who had previously written the script for Aa Dinagalu and Edegarike, came up with the idea. “I had read Sridhar’s book Thottikkuttale Ide Nettaru, and found it to be quite interesting. I wanted to bring the story on screen and went to ask for the rights of the book. Even he was keen but during our discussion, he suggested that I take up the subject of Silent Sunila.”
According to Suri, Sridhar had already started work on the film and had the script ready. “He arranged a meeting with Silent Sunila himself to eke out details. When I observed him during our meetings, I strongly felt that instead of choosing another hero to play the role, Sunila himself would be a perfect choice! Initially, he was hesitant but later accepted,” says Suri, who has made Sunila lose around 8 kgs for the role.
Silent Sunila has had a violent past and he rose to notoriety after the murder of ‘Bekkina Kannu’ Rajendra, but Suri is not about to highlight the criminal phase of the gangster in his film.
“Instead of going the normal way, I have picked up the romantic side of Silent Sunila and the actor’s transformation after that experience. In fact, that is what I liked the most about Sunila’s story — that he has married his lady love and also has a baby,” says Suri.
While Suri will be directing the film, the screenplay and dialogues have been jointly written by Agni Sridhar, Suri and D Sumana Kittur. Cameraman Sathya Hegde and Editor Deepu S Kumar have also joined the crew. Suri clarifies that even though he has taken up this film, he will continue directing his other film, Dodmane Huduga as that needs to be finished first. “I will start rolling Dodmane with Puneeth once the workers’ strike is resolved. My schedule for Silent Sunila will go on in between the release of my film, Kendasampige and shooting for Dodmane. I can manage it because I have a good team to rely on. This film is an experimental subject and will be a challenge after Kendasampige. I have a story with great cinematic purpose. My next schedule for Silent Sunila will be in April,” he signs off.