A trip down the memory lane with actor Sanchita Shetty

One part of the shoot was held at the VGP Golden Beach Resort. The shoot was set up to capture an important scene during the sunrise.
Actor Sanchita Shetty
Actor Sanchita Shetty

According to actor Sanchita Shetty, shooting for her upcoming film Maayavalai brought back a lot of memories. Revealing details about Maayavalai, she says that the film revolves around events that take place in a single night. So the actors had night shoots in several locations, including indoors, roadside locations, and along the beach. 

One part of the shoot was held at the VGP Golden Beach Resort. The shoot was set up to capture an important scene during the sunrise. When she got to the set, Sanchita realised that she had a personal connect with the location. “In that same location, I performed the very first shot of my very first scene in my debut Tamil film, Thillalangadi, opposite Jayam Ravi, directed by Mohan Raja. Now here I was, back at the same spot, 13 years later! I just cherished every moment of that part of the Maayavalai shoot. It made me look back on my film journey, reflecting on how much I had learnt, and the importance of navigating highs and lows with equanimity,” says Sanchita.

Another segment of Maayavalai was shot on a bylane along the ECR around midnight. Actor Charan had to follow Sanchita as she walked down the bylane. “Since everyone in the neighbourhood was asleep at the late hour, we all had to avoid making any noise and disturbing them.” So only a small unit was present. According to the actor, the cameraman Ramji followed the two actors with a steady cam while the director’s team was observing the scene from a distance.

“The director couldn’t use a megaphone to give us instructions. So we innovated by using our mobile phones instead. We kept our phones on the speaker to hear him say action and cut from his spot. We also used minimum lights. It was all quite a challenge.”

At the end of the lane, a van was positioned where both the actors had to get inside it at one point to shoot the rest of the scene. “The van shoot was challenging due to space constraints. But overall it was so well planned that things went smoothly. The minute I got into the van, I was struck by nostalgia yet again. It made me recall with fondness, my Soodhu Kavvum days, when I had shot inside a van just like this. The Maayavalai shoot was quite a happy journey down memory lane,” she signs off.

Location diaries
This weekly column details the fascinating encounters that often take place on the sets of a film

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