Mohenjo Daro is my most challenging film : CKM

Published On: 2020-01-12

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Mohenjo Daro is my most challenging film: CK Muraleedharan



Source: Silverscreen.in 

Date: June 7, 2016 



Ashutosh Gowariker’s historical Mohenjo Daro is, Muraleedharan says, “my most challenging film. It’s not easy to make big-budget movies totally realistic. Not all large-scale Bollywood movies can be called modern cinema. But I didn’t want Mohenjo Daro to be that kind of cinema. It is set in prehistoric times. The visuals have to match the audiences’ idea about that era. Designing the lighting structure was challenging. I did the (indoor) lighting, mostly, from ground, and not from top because those days, there were no electric lamps. People used diyas that were kept at an arms reach. I had to design a new kind of light for certain effects. It was a challenge to light up the underground caves and tombs. It took a lot of research. I consulted pictures of old shrines and buildings from Indus Valley era to get the effect right.” 


He praises Gowariker for his meticulous research on the project. “He wanted everything to be foolproof. Archaeologists from India and abroad were brought to the sets, and were made to walk through it, giving suggestions. We would have lengthy discussions all the time, on every aspect. He has been with me throughout the course of the movie. One of the best collaborations I ever had.” “For one of the scenes in Mohenjo Daro, I set the lighting in a particular way, using a lot more lamps than usual. I wanted the audience to feel amazed the way a person from that era might have felt upon walking into that space. Later, when I switched the lights off for another scene in the same set, Ashutosh remarked the scene would have looked prettier with a few more lights. I told him that I didn’t want people to get distracted by the lights. This is the way I approach films. I try to sync my work with the script. I want to sit with the director as much as possible, and want him to tell me what he wants.” Working with Ashutosh was so refreshing. A great experience. He is an equally passionate guy. He has no pressure on him. He has no fear. If we could not complete a scene today, he would make no fuss about it. “Lets do it tomorrow”, he would say. 


He made me listen to songs, with the entire unit waiting. And remember, this is an industry where people are terribly scared of songs leaking out before the official release. And this guy would set up huge speakers at the location and make us listen to the scratch version of songs that (AR) Rahman sent. He has that kind of courage. I really enjoyed working in Mohenjo Daro. It was totally a different experience. Usually you are given 15 -30 minutes for lunch on the sets. And here is this man who has no such qualms about time wasted on such things. He would discuss a scene for an hour. He has zero tension about success or failure. At his location, you are not trying to save money. Your only agenda is to make a good film. You are not bogged down by time limits.”