The Man behind the “Visual Treat”: D.o.P of “Bahubali 2: The Conclusion” at AISFM Campus!

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SS Rajamouli’s magnum opus “Bahubali 2: The Conclusion” is breaking all records with its successful run at the box-office. The film which is in its second week has garnered an estimated whooping 1000 crore across India, on its second Monday.

Mr. K K Senthil Kumar, D.o.P/Cinematographer of “Bahubali 2: The Conclusion” visited the AISFM Campus for an Interactive session. AISFM hosted a special screening of “Bahubali 2: The Conclusion” for its cinematography students and also for the camera technicians working for Annapurna Studios. Followed by the screening, Senthil was congratulated by AISFM, for the huge success of the film and the impact it is creating on millions of people.

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As VFX and storyline are an integral part of the movie, Senthil shared his thought-process and ideas on certain shots of the film.; sharing facts like – the film was shot on 4:3, rather than a 16:9 to purposely serve the IMAX screen. “The directors vision for the complete series was accurate in his head, and as the D.O.P, I helped him execute that vision through my camera. We worked with each other on most of the pre/post production,” said Senthil answering a question posed by one of our students.

When asked about ‘VFX to normal scenes ratio’ in the movie, and how it acts on his decision-making while capturing particular scenes; he said “The key is to keep it simple. I always try to keep it simple while I’m working. I have a list of scenes and I approach each one with the simplest solutions.” he answered.

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“As the film had exceeded expectations with the first part of the movie, the director had to take it up a notch, to surpass the audiences’ expectations which were set really high, already,” he added in the Q/A session, which was really insightful for the attendees who could gain behind-the-scenes knowledge about this blockbuster phenomenon taking over the world.

He also mentioned that planning and resource management is really important with a high budget project like Bahubali. He further added that, it took a complete year of pre-production before the sequel’s shoot began. If a brief idea of what has to be projected on screen is fairly accurate in the head, the execution becomes way easier. He mentions the skill-set to be prepared for instinctive decisions as when the shoot happens, improvisation for getting an edge should be done, naturally on a regular basis.

As Bahubali will be known for setting a trend, in the size that it has, it was an honour to have an interaction with the D.o.P of the biggest hit in the cinema industry, making and breaking records, in quality of talent and quantity of revenue, while uniting the world globally with the fascinating art of filmmaking.

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Telugu direction course launched!

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The Diploma in Film Direction for the Telugu Film Industry was launched yesterday at AISFM. Supriya Yarlagadda, Executive Director – Annapurna Studios, officially launching the course said, “This is the first time we are conducting the Telugu direction course here at AISFM and we are searching for talented professionals for the industry.”

This Telugu-medium course not just introduces aspiring directors to the craft of film and television production and the art of visual narrative, but also prepares them to work as assistant directors at a professional level and to enter their first jobs in the film and television industry.

“The first thumb rule to become a good director is to surround yourself with really good assistant directors,” said Supriya and went on to cite an example about Nagarjuna’s iconic movie ‘Shiva’. She said that Ram Gopal Varma had a great team of assistant directors who ably assisted him in bringing forth his thoughts into reality.

There is a crisis in the film industry now and that is the lack of talented assistant directors, she said and encouraged the students who joined this first-time course, and added that “you have come to learn the art of film direction and you can learn a new skillset here and get a job. Each and everyone of you should think that you are one-in-a-hundred and work towards your goal of becoming a director, and with this course you will be able to learn the skillset required to fulfill your goal.”

The lesser you read, the better it is and the more you do practically, the better it is, she concluded and wished the students success.

The course also covers the ground realities of working in this field, including how to be professional on set, how to pitch stories and how to plan a career path. Modules of the course include Short Film Making, Basics of Screenwriting, Cinematography, Sound, Editing amongst others.

Introduction to the Grammar of Filmmaking, Production and Assistant Direction Skills, Understanding The Role of an Assistant Director, Assembly Line of Production, On-set Actor Management are other aspects of the course that will help students understand the nitty-gritties of the film industry.

They will also get an opportunity to work as an assistant director and understand Scripting and Directing Teleseries, Understand Llarge vs Small Screen, Budgeting for TV production and more for Television Direction and Production.

Apart from equipping the students with the technical expertise and skillset required to excel in the film industry, they will also be made ‘industry aware’ and understand how the local industry works, how to build network and gain exposure etc.