Pawan Kumar's Lucia Has an Innovative Craft - The New Indian Express

Pawan Kumar's Lucia Has an Innovative Craft

Published: 10th December 2013 12:27 PM

Last Updated: 10th December 2013 12:27 PM

You have seen filmmakers exploring the dim-lit edges conjuring realms far beyond conventional imagination. Lucia, a film that turns reality into something as slippery as a dream, belongs to that league. It starts with the quotes of Kannada mystic poet Kanakadasa brimming with existential puzzles. Just like Chinese philosopher Zhuang Zhou’s dream of being a butterfly who dreams that he is Zhuangzi, the film examines the wavering thin line between reality and fantasy.  

Lucia is a pill that initiates lucid dreaming, but once you stop taking it you are trapped in never-ending nightmares. The film, an existential sleepwalk, follows the adventures of a lucid dreamer, but very often the dreamer and the dreamed are lost in the labyrinth induced reality. “It’s basically a psycho-thriller where the audience get transported to a dream,” says director Pawan Kumar.

Lucia has an innovative craft in more ways than one and Pawan says it was an afternoon dream that flickered the first spark. “After my first film I took an extended break, and in one of those days I had this dream. When I woke up from my nap I felt I had met someone but felt quite confused whether it was reality or illusion. So I started thinking along the lines of lucid dreaming and later wrought it in the form of a script. Once I started writing I spent most of my time researching my subject and as the work progressed more and more ideas sprout up,” he says.

The film, which won Best Film Audience Choice award at the London Indian Film Festival, also had a good theatrical run. Pawan says he didn’t expect the  film done in an experimental and noncommercial format to keep the cash registers ringing. “There is no history of a film like this getting a warm welcome at the  box office. Commercial success was less anticipated and more of a surprise. Right now Lucia is being remade into Tamil, Telugu and Hindi,” he says.

Pawan says he is inspired and influenced by a slew of Hollywood filmmakers including Christopher Nolan, the creator of most-celebrated dream-invasion thriller Inception. “I learn a lot by watching films. I have been following Tarantino Quentin, Spielberg, Christopher Nolan and our very own Anurag Kashyap.”

Lucia is also Kannada’s first crowd-funded film as a flock of Kannadigas spread across the world pooled into make the film. “Raising money for an out-of-the-box project is nearly impossible in Kannada cinema. I want to spread awareness about Kannada film industry among global audience. When I look at festival schedules I hardly find our films there. I want that situation to change,” he adds.  

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