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Look out Batman, here comes Kandasamy!

Last updated on: August 20, 2009 

Look out Batman, here comes Kandasamy!

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N K Ekambaram, one of the leading cinematographers of the South Indian film industry is the man who shot the most awaited Tamil film, Kandasamy and the Telugu version Mallana. Kandasamy stars Vikram and Shriya Saran and is directed by Susi Ganesan.

His resume boasts of the National award-winning Iyarkai and the scientific thriller E among many other films. He is currently working on the Hindi film De Dhana Dhan and also an English film.

R G Vijayasarathy caught up with Ekambaram to discuss his work in Kandasamy which is releasing on August 21.


Image: A scene from Kandasamy

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'Some action sequences took us 10 to 15 days to complete'

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It took almost two years for Kandasamy to complete. Why the delay?

Yes. The post production work took some time. But it was inevitable for such a huge project. The film had a novel concept and it needed a totally different type of story telling. If we had to make an impact with the concept, we would not afford to dilute the norms of making. 

We had to shoot in different locations in five different countries and sets had to be created on some outdoor locations too. Also, different lighting patterns and layers had to be used for shooting some of the scenes. The actions sequences and  songs were shot against different backdrops. There were many costume changes as well. Some of the action sequences took us nearly 10 to 15 days to complete.


Image: A scene from Kandasamy

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'The main problem was to create the perfect ambience for our shoots'

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What were the challenges you faced while shooting the film?

There were many challenges. The main problem was to create the perfect ambience for our shoots. We used a lighting pattern keeping in mind that Kandasamy is a super hero film and it had many fantasy elements also. 

We had decided that we would use the best technical equipment to shoot the film and producer Thanu was more than willing to help us.

I had no cause for complaints because all the lenses and equipments I had asked for were made available to me. Since it was a dream project for Thanu and Susi Ganesan, I had to put in a lot of hard work. I am extremely happy because I had plenty of opportunities to innovate in terms of camera angles and lighting.


Image: A scene from Kandasamy

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'Susi Ganesan wanted me to translate his vision on to the screen'

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Were you tense at any time because it was the biggest project you had handled in your career?

When I am working, I don't get tense. I just focus on my work. My work in Iyarkai which won a National award, was noticed. 

But here was a young director who had many ideas in mind while writing the script. He wanted me to translate his vision on to the screen. I am extremely thankful to Susi Ganesan and Vikram for being patient with me as it took a lot of time to light up every scene. 


Image: A scene from Kandasamy

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'Vikram's stunts will be the highlight of the film'

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What was the most challenging part of the film?

The most challenging part was in Mexico where we had to shoot an action sequence and a song. We had to shoot the flying  sequences and it needed a lot of work in lighting the scene. 

There were rope shots and flying shots which are not easy to shoot in unknown locales. But the whole unit was patient and offered great support and everything went off smoothly.

We wanted to make a super hero film that is on par with Batman and Spiderman. Vikram's daring stunts will be a major highlight of the film.

Another challenge is that the film had to have a fantasy feel but at the same time it should look realistic. So the  cinemetographer's job was not that easy. Thankfully Susi Ganesan gave me a lot of freedom and I was able to experiment a lot. I must say the film gave me a lot of creative satisfaction.


Image: A scene from Kandasamy

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