For director Rohan Krishna, the journey from television to films is a dream come true. After the success of his 'Kana Kaanum Kalangal' on Vijay TV, this director bagged Lingusamy's home production Pattalam starring Nadiya and several newcomers. He tells Expresso about his journey and what's in store for viewers.
Schooling in Abu Dhabi, Rohan had no film background, except for the fact that his uncle Joshi is a leading Malyalam director (Twenty Twenty and other films). His family owning three theatres in hometown Varkala, watching films became a passion for Rohan from an early age. "But Dad wanted me to do MBA," he laughs. Ultimately Rohan graduated in Fine Arts from the Madras College of Arts and Crafts! "I specialised in sculpting but I knew I wanted to be a director some day," recalls Rohan. This artistic sense has honed his creative skills and made him more sensitive to colours, forms, cinematography and photography as a director he feels.
A three year course in direction and screenplay from the Madras Film and Television Institute gave him more confidence and brought him nearer to his goal. His short film Parama Padham was sent to compete for the National award in 2003 and LV Chandru IV B made it to the Montreal and Goa festivals, but that didn’t get him any work, but led him to director Priyadarshan. "He is my inspiration. He is a great visualiser and my training under him for films like Hulchul and several Malayalam ones have made me what I am today," says Rohan.
Rohan also did several ads before Vijay TV saw his profile and signed him up for a serial. "I made 'Kana Kaanum Kaalangal' inspired by my schooldays. We tried an all new cast and chose the finalists from 7000 applicants at the auditions," he recounts.
The serial became a hit and the highest rated in Orkut circles. But in 2006 Rohan left after 170 episodes. So how did Pattalam happen? "Producer SC Bose used to see this serial on TV and told his brother Lingusamy about it. After a meeting, they offered me a film. My wife Sheba ( the story writer of Pattalam) was working on this story and Lingusamy liked it. That's how 'Pattalam' came to be,” he laughs.
The film is a youth subject and three boys from the serial are also in it along with several others. Nadiya makes a comeback as the school correspondent and psychiatrist. "'Pattalam' is a film people from every walk of life can relate to across all cities, towns and villages," claims Rohan. With the film almost complete, looks like one more talented director will soon make an entry into Kollywood.