It was on a shoestring budget that Manoj Mopri and Rahul Unnikrishnan set out for making a short film. The film ‘Idavazhiyile Nazhikakkallu’ had 10 scenes and all of it were completed in a day, beginning from dawn to dusk on the New Year day of 2012.
All that the team had with them was a full-written script and the cast comprising five, including them. The fledgling film makers could not have professional actors as the meagre amount in their hands would not be sufficient.
“Initially we could not even find a producer for the film as none was ready to financially support a venture of newbies. Yet we were not ready to drop the plan,” says Manoj, director of the film.
The next step was to find the finance for the film. Manoj, a daily wage labourer, shelled out the maximum amount he could. Shooting began in Palakkad with hired equipment including the camera. It started by around seven in the morning and came to a conclusion by eight in the evening.
“To finish all the scenes within that time was a real challenge. We preferred outdoors and close-up shots were avoided,” Rahul Unnikrishnan, chief associate of the film, says.
Though the actors were amateurs, a majority of the shots were okay in one take and only a very few shots took up to three takes for perfection. Still another jolt was awaiting them at the end.
Before shooting the climax, the natural light began to fade. Even a single shot for the concluding part was not taken. The crew then made a slight change to the script and filmed it in the available light.
“The climax was a fight scene. It was unthinkable to rent lights,” Rahul says. The only facility they had with them was two vehicles, an Omni van and a Toyota Qualis. The climax scene was taken in the light from the head light of the vehicles.
The plot revolves around a well-educated jobless youngster who goes astray in drug peddling. The main cast includes Manoj, Rahul and Vivek. Sajeev is the assistant director. Shabeer has wielded the camera and make-up is done by Rajeev. The locations were Pombra, Kulakkattu Kurussi and Karimpuzha in Palakkad. The film in the post-production stage is undergoing editing at present.
The crew is all set to release it by Vishu this year. With the experience of their first venture, Manoj and Rahul are getting ready to make the next film, a romantic thriller, very soon.