During a two-hour interaction with Kamal Hasan today, I got a reasonably good drift of the intriguing nature of his forthcoming Dasavatharam. (Read the review “Dasavatharam explores the futility of religion, orthodoxy” here. I got the opportunity to watch the film with Kamal at Four Frames on Thursday night)
Kamal, always a thinking actor, opened with a personal statement about how he does not let his personal ethics get in the way of storytelling in films. That indeed is the credo of every professional. Dasavatharam, he said, does not dumb down, is intelligent, witty and yet complex enough with themes that revolve from Al Gore’s environmentalism to the antiquity of Ramanujam. There are stark perspectives of bio-weapons and staggering events like tsunamis.
Michael Westmore has done for Tamil films in recent years, what Ellis R.Duncan did in the last century, Kamal points out. His piece de resistance could be Dasavatharam. His intensity translates into 400 to 500 hours of make-up spread over 600 days. It is a film that has been in the making for a long time, and it also promises to break the stereotype.
Watch the trailer
In getting creative people involved in this kind of endeavour, the spirit is akin to the crusades, where the fighters would press on without thought of reward, which they could not hope to enjoy even if it existed. As both actor and writer (“all the best roles are mine, so others were happy to do just about any available role,” he jokes), Kamal promises a lot in Dasavatharam.
He and K.S.Ravikumar could have made much more in the time that they spent in the project, but this film has really expanded his empire, in much the same way that the colonial British discovered striking colours in their new territories.
Read more from this interaction in The Hindu : Dasavatharam has a lot of Al Gore and Ramanunar in it. Read my other post on the Kamal’s striking imagery in the film. See stills from the film here.