Film industry attracts all kinds of people who passionately want to be part of tinsel town. Though many want to come as producers, directors, artistes and technicians, few choose to be financiers. Though these people do not get much visibility, they are considered the backbone of the film industry. One such financier is Mohan Kumar TS. Known as Supreeth to industry folks, he is the youngest financier who started at the age of 22. Being among the handful in this profession, he says, "Once upon a time, the industry was buzzing with 50 to 60 financiers, it has now reduced to five to six. Today, the finance is given only to top 5 to 6 producers in the industry. For example, this year among the 150 releases, industry financiers would have lent money to just 15 films. For the remaining 135 films, the producers would have to invest their own money. Nobody is ready to invest in the newcomers,” he says.
Niranjan, Basha, Shailendra Babu are among others who finance in the Kannada industry.
He says, "Sometimes, I land up with the wrong person and getting back the money from that person will be a torture. I mostly go by the project and not by person. There are a few people who stands by their words," he says.
It does not mean that financiers only want profit, they also do this for the love of cinema. “I did finance Bahubali when RS Productions took the distribution rights. I wanted to be part of that project somehow and I am glad I could do it,” he says.
As a financier, Supreeth likes to get involved in everything to know how much he can invest and what will be his earnings. "I have financed about 10 films till date. My next will be with BK Gangadhar for whom I will be financing for his upcoming Poguru starring Dhruva Sarja. He is a friend of mine, I have been part of his projects for the last six years," he says.
A financier must learn the art of recovery. “I have lost money as a financier. When you give it based on trust, this can happen. But if you use your mind, you will get your hard-earned money back. There are cheaters everywhere, it is just how we handle the people,” he says.
Supreeth, who is a qualified engineer, runs an event management company with his friend Sameer. — A Sharadhaa