A Story teller

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Lights, Camera, Action!

On the third floor of an unremarkable building is the studio for which I work, Open Face Media. Depending on which of the two lifts you take (left side or the right side) you will enter the door of this office from two different directions (hot tip: I always take the left). No matter which direction you enter from, look to your right as you enter the office. There, in beautiful cursive, are the words:

“Those who tell the Stories rule the World.”

A lot of things about this office are beautiful, creative and harmonious. From the red English booth at one corner, to the mesmerizing leopard portrait hanging in the green room, everything is designed to allow for free flow (of thoughts, not beer). What did my stint here teach me of the crafts of film making? For my concluding blog, I had like to write about film direction based on my experience of the craft.

My director, Pavan Atukuri, is a story teller. How do I know this? Perhaps from the motley collection of books in his office, or his ability to write an engrossing story (read Abhimanika, the second blog on this site). Or do I know this from his ability to be a team player? His coordination with his co-workers; guiding them and listening to their opinion, the way he plays the good guy and the bad guy with equal ease and total commitment to his vision. His ability to smooth ruffled feathers, giving space to the actor and helping them deliver on screen. From the way he builds contacts, in a field where success and shelf life depends on your social skills.

From a preliminary view, these seem to be the most important traits in a director of a film. The craft, of course, is not merely this. The craft of direction is the process of inter mingling between various creative heads of the manifold units that a film is composed of. It is the work involved in transforming the single dimensional words on a paper, and breathing life into it, making it two dimensional and in some cases, even three dimensional.

A director needs to have knowledge on every department of the movie making process, because he is the one man who is present in every stage of the film making. Whether or not he writes the script, he has to approve of it, understand it. He has to see it from every angle, because what the mind pictures, is not always within the bounds of human skill to deliver. The DoP and the Director figure out the best way to translate these words from various angles. He liaises with the production design department, the sound department, lights and anything and everything that appears on the screen. Thus, a director is a screenwriter unto himself, a DoP and a sound director, a production designer, an editor and a technician and an actor. Without an intimate working knowledge of the various crafts, and without the ability to communicate with the heads of this creatively charged field, a director’s vision is never realised.

Let’s take a look at some of the best directors in the world, and if you don’t find a favourite here, it’s only because a blog can’t last forever.

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SATYAJIT RAY:

  • Days and Nights in the Forest
  • Pather Panchali
  • Aparijito
  • The World of Apu
  • Devi

FEDERICO FELLINI:

  • La Dolce vita
  • La strada
  • 8 1/2
  • Juliet of the spirits
  • City of women
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CHARLIE CHAPLIN:

  • Modern times
  • The great dictator
  • The circus
  • Gold rush
  • The kid

KASINATHUNI VISWANATH:

  • Sagara Sangamam
  • Shankarabharanam
  • Eeshwar
  • Shruti Layalu
  • Swathi muthyam
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ADOOR GOPALAKRISHNAN:

  • Vidheyan
  • Rat trap
  • Mathilukal
  • Shadow Kill
  • A climate for crime

ALFRED HITCHHOK:

  • Psycho
  • Vertigo
  • North by northwest
  • Rebecca
  • Notorious
  • The birds
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INGMAR BERGMAN:

  • The virgin spring
  • Through a glass darkly
  • Fanny and Alexander
  • Smiles of a summer night
  • The seventh heal

STEVEN SPEILBERG:

  • Jaws
  • E.T
  • Jurassic park
  • Schindler’s list
  • Catch me if you can
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HRISHIKESH MUKHERJEE:

  • Namak haram
  • Golmaal
  • Bawarchi
  • Satyakam
  • Anand

SS RAJAMOULI:

  • Eega
  • Baahubali
  • Magadheera
  • Vikramarkudu
  • Chatrapati
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S SHANKAR:

  • Mudhalvan
  • Nanban
  • Sivaji
  • Hindustani
  • Anniyan

YASH CHOPRA:

  • Deewar
  • Silsila
  • Kabhi kabhi
  • Chandni
  • Dil to paagal hai
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QUENTIN TARANTINO:

  • Pulp fiction
  • Inglorious basterds
  • Django unchained
  • Kill bill
  • Reservoir dogs

- Open Face Team


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* This disclaimer informs readers that the views, thoughts, and opinians expressed in the text belongs solely to the author, and not necessarily to Openface Media Organization, or any other group or individual.*

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