the Small screen to big one
Raghu, News Today, 19th August 1999
It took over 10 years for cinema lovers to get the taste
of talented movie-maker, R. Shyamaprasad's abilities since
his first telefilm in 1987.
Nevertheless Shyamaprasad has always been comfortable
with what he has been doing for the last many years, namely
tele film-making. His first effort on the big screen Agnisakshi
had received as much praise as he had got from the work
done for the television media. His first movie, which
was based on a famous Malayalam Novel under the same name
Agnisakshi, has won many awards in the State and national
level, not to mention about the recognition from other
private film bodies.
The story of Agnisakshi was a familiar and famous one.
And there was no need for convincing anybody about the
possibilities of making it into a good film. 'And as far
as I am concerned I have tried to be as sincere as I can
to the story and not made any changes,' says Shyamaprasad,
who was in Chennai to award for best debut director.
But, for a person like him, the medium of cinema was not
easy to adopt as he had been working on television projects
without making much compromises and he never viewed it
as a big business proposition.
In cinema, one has to think of the commercial side and
the possibilities of getting back the invested sum. This
is not so with telefilms. Elaborating on it, he refers
to the movie-makers an states that the directors are forced
to make compromises'.
They have to think of the audience and distributors and
all others connected with the industry before taking the
plunge. However, he says that both cinema and television
are creative media and that there is no doubt about it.
Further dwelling into the subject, he explains: 'In film-making
you will have to interact with more number of people and
hold discussions about the theme and the ideas'.
'The people in the field may have different ideas and
styles. As you start interacting with these people at
different levels, you end up making compromises. And no
director can escape from this'.
On his style of functioning, Shyamaprasad says he does
not work solely for the benefit of getting any award.
'I love to bring in more crowds and my target audience
is definitely not the ones who watch only art movies'
After making quite a lot of successful telefilm in the
past, his entry into the film world itself had made news
sometime back. Besides Agnisakshi, Shyamaprasad had also
made another movie in the same period.
The film was Kallukondoru Pennu, which has not yet been
released. Making it big in the world of movies is certainly
not going to make him stay away from television. 'I am
working on some new projects for a private channel and
another movie project is also in the pipeline' he discloses.
The director, who has been making movies close to real
life, has very limited number of favorite Indian directors.
Like Shyam Bengal and among Malayalam directors, Padmarajan
is my favorite' he says.
'There should be some realism in a movie and I will not
make anything that is run-of-the mill stuff'. Turning
to Agnisakshi, he says he would not work on another movie
like that, particularly with the same back ground.
A student of School of Drama, this 8-year old son of BJP
leader, O. Rajagopal, from Palakkad had been striking
it on his own since he joined Doordarshan, Thiruvananthapuram,
way back in the 80s.
Though his famous telefilms including Nilaavu Ariyunnu
had won a prestigious award in Germany he preferred to
come out of the clutches of premier television channel
in search of creative freedom. Being the son of a BJP
leader had also landed him in some controversies. Brushing
aside the allegations of influence of his father in getting
him awards, he says that his father has nothing to do
with his work. Just because my father is a BJP man, it
does not prevent me from taking up my job seriously. He
is vehement when he says that.
Shyamaprasad and his cameraman friend, Alagappan, now
run a film, Shoot N Edit' in Thiruvananthapuram. Almost
all the work done by Shyamaprasad has been photographed
Reminiscing on his past, Shyamaprasad says that after
completing his course in School of Drama, he went to England
and studied cinematography in the University of Hull,
and then went on to make more than a dozen of telefilms
like Venalinte Ozhivu, Peruvazhiyile Kariyila, Viswavikhyathamaya
Mooku, Uyirthezhunelppu, Niramillatha Chitrangal to name
a few. He has been doing well ever since.
With numerous projects on hand, he can not afford to disappoint
his well-wishers and with his professionalism he should
be making less compromise.