Screenings have resumed in the theatres in Kerala, with No Time To Die, the latest installment in the James Bond thriller series, drawing audiences. Star that is slated to hit the screens on 29 October would be the first Malayalam movie to be released in theatres after months. The movie stars Joju George and Sheelu Abraham in the lead roles. Star would be director Domin Dsilva’s second project after Paippin Chuvattile Pranayam. In a candid chat with Manorama Online, Domin speaks about his hopes for the movie that would attract attention as the first Malayalam movie to be released when the theatres reopen.
Domin calls Star a psychological mystery thriller. The film discusses the theme of birth signs or star signs which are likely to affect a person’s character or their lives. Star is also an incredible family drama in which Joju and Sheelu act as a married couple. Interestingly, actor Prithviraj makes a cameo appearance in this movie in a pivotal role. Domin says that all types of audience would enjoy Star. However, families are the movie’s target audience. The film’s main location was Chottanikkara. “Each person would perceive this movie as per their beliefs and values. I am waiting for the audience’s response. The film’s tagline is ‘Burst of Myths’,” says Domin.
“The movie has been titled Star as it is based on star signs. It is said that persons born under each star sign would possess certain characteristics and would face problems in unique ways. This movie discusses some of the instances and events that happen in the lives of the characters,” notes the filmmaker.
Prithviraj in a cameo
Domin says that the actor seemed perfect to play the character. He believes that Prithviraj’s presence and his role are going to be helpful for the movie. The director is happy that an amazing actor like Prithviraj had essayed a significant character in the movie. However, he attributes the story as the main strength of the film.
Three music directors have worked in Star in which music plays a prominent role. William Francis has composed the background score while the three songs have been composed by M Jayachandran and Ranjin Raj. “The three songs are unique and hence we wanted to bring in three different music directors. Meanwhile, Nithya Mammen, Vijay Yesudas, Sithara Krishnakumar and Mridula Warrier have rendered these songs. Music and songs are significant to this movie. We have used the classical style and the modern technology to compose the songs,” reveals Domin.
Filming during Covid
The filming of Star had begun when the cinema industry became active after the first wave of Covid 19. Domin says that the pandemic protocols were strictly followed while filming the movie. “No one could enjoy the sets. After the shots, everyone sat apart, wearing their masks. The number of crew members too was less,” says the filmmaker.
‘Star’ of hope
Star is the first Malayalam movie that would be released when the theatres reopen after the Covid induced break. “We have decided to release the movie in theatres as we are confident. It is the theatres that made the cinema grow. So, in my opinion, the audience should come to the theatres to watch the movie. I would like to request the government to take favorable decisions that would help the theater owners. The government should take steps to ease the restrictions and allow more people inside the theatres. I hope that the government will lend a helping hand to the theatre owners in Kerala. My movie suits theatrical release and OTT viewing too. I have made the movie in a way which makes it enjoyable for the audience in any medium or platform,” says Domin.
The young filmmaker, however, believes that cinema is ultimately an art form that is to be enjoyed in theaters. He says that Star is a perfect movie for families, who have been bored sitting at home, to come together and enjoy watching. He hopes that the Malayali audience would come to the theatres to give his movie a grand welcome.
“Even when other fields have resumed activities, the cinema industry hasn’t reached its full potential. There are hundreds of people whose livelihood is dependent on cinema. They too are hopeful when the theatres are finally opening. The cinema industry has grown only with the support of the audience. I hope that they will continue to support and encourage us,” notes Domin.
“We do not hesitate to go to restaurants and shopping malls. We take off masks while eating at a hotel. I think a theatre is safer than that, as there is no need to remove masks in a theatre. Besides, the theatre halls are sanitized before admitting the audience; they are sanitized after each show. So, I can say that theatres are safer than other public places. In our neighboring states, theatres are functioning as usual. People have returned to their normal lives there. I am really confident about Star. The rest has to be decided by the audience. They have to say whether they enjoyed the movie. I am eagerly waiting for their opinions and comments,” Domin signs off.