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An amazing experience – Making of “Nanna NeraLu”

posted Jul 26, 2010, 5:32 AM by Unknown user   [ updated Apr 21, 2011, 8:10 PM by Vivek Shivaprabhu ]

I was on a vacation to my native place by taking off from my regular work. The idea of making a film on “love towards animal” clicked all of a sudden when I visited one of my relatives place in Sirsi. There I saw Chaitali (my uncle’s daughter) extremely happy as her dad had given her a cute kitten (Pinky) as a b’day gift. She was so lost in playing with Pinky that she did not even notice me or others and the chocolates that I had brought for her!!!

I came back to Bangalore with this Idea and discussed with my team. This time we wanted to make film of a different kind. Why not a story being narrated through a song as the medium with a nice background score to go with it? Within a week Vishwanath introduced me to his very talented friend Shridhar who is very good at lyrics writing (and now he is one of our core team members). After going through his earlier works, I decided that he would pen the lyrics for the film. We plotted a simple story to depict love towards animal. Casting was not a problem at all as we had Chaitali and Pinky already on board !! :) but I wanted a song to be written differently in the sense I wanted to personify the cat i.e. as if cat is singing the song yet it should be applicable to the situation of the girl in the story; tricky isn’t it? I must say, Shridhar managed the requirements very well and came up with a b’ful song! Shruti took the responsibility of composing a tune for the song but to my amazement song was ready within two days; we dint have a tune by then.

Lyrics did meet up to my expectation; if you listen to the song carefully you will find that it is actually a song of a cat (which will be revealed only at the end with some message from cat) and yet song is just based on the situation that the kid is in. The song starts with “I am alone in this life” – which is the condition of both kid and cat in the film. Song went through some modification to fit to the tune. Music was an issue as we dint have musicians in our group at that time so we thought of going for a song without music but make sure singing should be high pitched with alaaps to cover music wherever possible. We decided that Shruti would sing the song.

“Sirsi” a beautiful town in the lap of Western Ghats of Karnataka and it was our shooting spot. I went to my relatives place. Chaitali’s parents agreed for this work and provided all the support required to us. Shooting was the biggest challenge we faced in this project as it involved a cat and we had to patiently wait till we got a good shot. Chaitali was very active and some time hyper active which lead to numerous takes!! In the emotional scene where she is supposed to cry she used to laugh and when she had done the scene correctly cat used to be missing from the frame!!! It took us 4 cumbersome days from morning to till evening to complete the shoot. I learnt that it requires a huge patience whenever you are working with either kids or animals. In our case we had both of them in our movie!! :) I must admit that I was tired a lot after 3rd day’s shoot but the tryst of Chaitali laughing and the cat missing from the frame continued!!!

It took one week for song recording, editing. Guru chipped in to write English sub-titles. To my amazement many people liked our work especially an old house backdrop, cute girl and the cat. In the end, I felt the efforts we put in were worth it! I would love to work again for any for our future projects in any of the towns of Western Ghats or costal line of Karnataka. Hope that I get that opportunity soon!

- Bharath Balemane