Filmmaker who beat all odds to realise his dream

Alan during the shooting of his film 'Gloora'. Photo: Manorama

The moment Alan touched the camera after four and a half years while in a wheelchair, the pain, the struggles he went through and a lot of dreams rushed through his veins.

Starting on a ‘filmy’ journey together, his friend Nithin was suddenly added to the unseen frame of death. However, the dreams Alan dreamt along with Nithin about cinema and photo shoots were still in focus in his mind without fading out.

Alan’s debut film ‘Gloora’, for which he has completed the shooting, is his urge to bounce back from where he fell and his confidence. ‘Gloora’ is getting ready to be released in 7 languages at the same time.

During the shooting, which was in different locations including Kannavam forest, Vagamon and Iritty, Alan’s friends carried him on their shoulders to the places where the wheelchair could not reach. Thus, Alan has become the first person to work as a film director and cinematographer while still confined to a wheelchair.

Alan Vikranth Sebastian

Son of Sebastian and Mary from Thonikkuzhiyil in Thondiyil, Kannur District, Alan completed his Plus two from Velimanam Higher Secondary School. He joined Kochi Film Institute soon after his Plus two realising that his path and passion is cinema. Alan completed the course with a gold medal for Best Director.

In 2018, he started a studio in partnership with his friend Nithin Andrews at Athirambuzha in Kottayam. He also got to do a small role in a Tamil film. That was when he changed his name to Alan ‘Vikranth’.

As he was getting engaged with such works and discussions were on for a short film, he met with an accident.

On September 9, 2018, while he was going to Nithin’s house after closing the studio, a car hit his bike in between Ettumanoor and Athirampuzha. Nithin lost his life. Alan who fell off the bike suffered a spine injury. After a few weeks, he realised that he has lost mobility below his waist. After 6 months of treatment, he returned home confined to a wheelchair.

Alan and his friends were about to make a short film casting Nithin in the lead role. During their trips to find the location for the movie, they had done a trial shoot with the camera they had. On reaching home after months-long treatment, Alan compiled the scenes from the trial shoot and released a short film titled ‘Kottayathu Oru Pranayakalathu’. That was a year ago.

Gloora, the path towards the dream

In fact, Gloora is not a dream, but the path to reach the dream for Alan. While spending four and a half years in the wheelchair, Alan’s urge was to make a full-length Malayalam commercial film. Thinking that he needed a good project to approach the superstars to realise his dream, Alan started writing Gloora.

Alan himself has handled the story, screenplay, direction and cinematography for the movie. Reaching the places where the shoot was scheduled itself was a huge challenge. For thirty days, Alan had to even skip his physiotherapy sessions.

He used to wake up before 4 in the morning and leave for Kannavam. He used to remain in the wheelchair throughout the shooting time. To the places where there was no access for the wheelchair, Alan used to be carried by 4 or 5 people. He completed the shooting while seated, leaning onto a tree trunk or such places and holding the camera.

Each day, as he trekked up, there was no surety that the shooting could be continued the next day. There were days when Alan returned home crying out loud without being able to bear the excruciating pain. His strength was his friends who stood by him, like his shadows, for anything and everything.

As there was no experienced production controller, that work also had to be handled by Alan. Though Gloora does not have a huge star cast, the graphics, fight, story and scenes of the film are all of international standards. The duration of the film is 1 hour 20 minutes. Alan’s brother Clint Sebastian is the producer for Gloora, under the banner of Rainbow Universal Studios.

The real dream

Alan is currently undergoing physiotherapy and treatment under Dr Sreeraj S Panikkar at SPS Clinic in Malappuram. All hopes and dreams are about being able to get up and walk upon completion of the treatment.

He has the script for his dream film complete and sealed. However, the lack of physical ability to find the producers and go and meet them in person remains to be a challenge. Alan is sure that it will happen one day or the other; For, Alan hopes that ‘Gloora’ would speak more than words.

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