One of my friends messaged me if I am willing to talk to a girl who did a short film regarding the Devadasis. I did a quick search in YouTube and got to see the movie.
I came to know that this is her first short film and choosing such a script is a big deal. So I had a talk with her and here comes the conversation.
Tell us about yourself.
I am Lakshmi Pooja and am born and brought up in Bangalore. I am an home interior entrepreneur and I am so passionate about film making and acting. I am right now doing an album and am a singer too.
How did you come up with this title?
There is a book named “NithyaSumangali” which I went through and the actual meaning of the word “Nithyasumangali” is forever free from the adversity of widowhood. It was positive and so I chose that word.
Why did you choose to take a movie about those women?
I wanted to talk something about those women as nobody took any real efforts to discuss about them, to educate us about them. Nobody exposed how they really were. Also I will talk about them much more in my future movies.
How many days you took to direct the movie?
Shooting was done in three days but editing and recording got delayed due to some internal issues and the movie got totally over and released by November 19 of last year.
What made you think that these actors can do justice to those roles and how did you choose?
My friend Nanda gopal who have also acted in the movie suggested others. Main content of the movie is about the flashback. The one who played the role of a Devadasi is a trained, budding artist in Karnataka and also she is a Miss Karnataka beauty pageant (2018).
What was the background work you did for this movie?
I was inspired by Manichitrathazhu , the Malayalam version of Chandramukhi, Devadasi which is also another Malayalam movie and chose to watch many videos regarding Nithyasumangali in Youtube.
Have you ever presented your movie in any film festivals?
I participated in Russian culture, Chennai where they screened my movie also I presented it in Kala Samruddhi International Short Film Fest in which, totally 209 films from 30 countries were screened, 105 films were nominated , 68 were awarded under 23 different categories. I got the Best female director silver award which is the 2nd position. People over 30 countries participated but I was the only girl from Karnataka.
The images of women we see when you display the credits, who are they?
The women were really “Devadasis”. I did a research online and this is the video link
Tell us about the controversies you faced while screening the movie.
I have heard people judging my character for choosing such a script. As I was only 19 when I directed the movie, I received all sort of comments. Regarding my age, I got random messages from people stating that if you could take a movie about them then you are a bad woman and asked me annoying questions regarding sex.
What are your future projects?
For now, I am doing a short film and am going to do a feature film to explain in detail about the Nithyasumangali.
Cinematography & Editing by Joshep roy
Music Director Keerthi Vasan
Vfx by Thiyagu
NithyaSumangali – Dr. Janavi jothi
Villain – Chandru
Producer K.P Productions by Annapoorna (My mom)
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