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Movies are good or bad and rest is all about packaging: Salim Ahamed

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May 06, 2013 at 06:31pm IST

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Salim Ahamed's critically acclaimed debut feature 'Adaminte Makan Abu' picked up four national awards in 2011 and was India's official entry into the Best Foreign Language Film at the Oscars that year. Screened at every major international film festivals, it went on to win accolades from the national and international media. Director Salim Ahamed joined IBNLive readers for an interaction on his film 'Adaminte Makan Abu' and new projects.

Q. Please name two filmmakers who has inspired you the most both in international cinema and Malayalam cinema. Please give specific answers rather than diplomatic answers:-) Asked by: Sharath

Movies are good or bad and rest is all about packaging: Salim Ahamed

Director Salim Ahamed joined IBNLive readers for an interaction on his film 'Adaminte Makan Abu' and new projects.

A. I Have always admired Iranian filmmaker Majid Majidi for his wonderful craft and fascinating perspectives. Among Malayalam filmmakers, Padmarajan is an all time favourite.

Q. Have you assisted in films before your venture 'Adaminte Makan Abu'? Do you think it is compulsory to assist in film to become a film maker? Asked by: Mahesh Periyadan

A. I did assist director GS Vijayan in his movie Saphalyam before making Adaminte Makan Abu. However, I don't think one really needs to cut one's teeth as an assistant before finding one's feet as a filmmaker. What is more important is to have a movie in your heart.

Q. What is your opinion about the positive changes taking place in Malayalam cinema now?What other changes do you wish to see?Also who is your favorite actor&director? Asked by: rajkumar

A. I love the way the director, camera and the script have become the pivots of Malayalam cinema, instead of just the actors, and the way the audience has been so receptive to the several creative expressions in our filmdom that are so different from the past. I hope and wish that the new Malayalam moviedom will also give us films that linger for long in our hearts, and not just passing fancies. About directors and actors, there are too many really talented people in our moviedom, and it's not fair to pick just one or two

Q. Loved your film. What are you working on next? Asked by: Rahul

A. Thanks. I have just finished shopping my second movie Kunhanandante Kada (Shop @ Crossroads) which has Mammooty in lead role. Eminent cinematographer Madhu Ambat wielded the camera, and Oscar award winner Rasoolum Pookutty did the sound.

Q. 'Adaminte Makan Abu' rescues the Malayalam cinema from the present crisis situation. The crisis situation created from the lack of support for good cinema from the Malayali audience. Best of luck for your future projects. Asked by: Anand Jeyaraj

A. Many thanks.

Q. Why did you select Saleem Kumar for the film instead of super stars? Asked by: Snowbird

A. Salim Kumar, besides being a wonderful actor, was best suited for the character.

Q. How do find the films of Ritwik Ghatak and John Abraham (and of course not the Bollywood muscleman)? Asked by: Omanakuttan

A. Ghatak can only be described as a sheer genius, perhaps one much before his time. John Abraham too was a master, who would hold a mirror to us and then throw a stone on it. His movies were an extension of himself, and he enjoyed upturning the way we looked at our cinema and ourself, with each of his creations.

Q. What was the inspiration behind the making of film "Adaminte Makan Abu"? While making the films, what are the things that you stress at and the things you overlook? Asked by: ashwini

A. Abu was not a fictional character. He is the raw and earthy result of melding an aged and poor gentleman from a remote village in Malappuram, and the poor atterwala of my own village, Mattannur, in Kerala.There is no standard rule that you could follow to assimilate or overlook when you make a movie, most of it is instinctive and based on a gut feeling, and differs from movie to movie.

Q. When will your new movie 'Kunhanandante Kada' release in Kerala? What is the subject dealt in that? Asked by: Rakesh

A. Possibly by June. The movie is about a couple whose thought frames and attitudes are as parallel as the rail tracks, their life and times in a village about to lose itself in the battle between development and existence.

Q. Do you believe in the concept of parallel cinema and mainstream cinema? Asked by: sivanandan

A. I believe there are only two types of movies.The good, and the bad. The rest is all about packaging and labelling.

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