Posts tagged ‘EMME MANZAREH’

71 BC

How come I was unaware of SPARTACUS, the boldest TV series I’m watching at present which was aired 2 years ago? It’s shameful not to know anything about it for someone who boasts on having considerable knowledge in films, and more shameful at a time when internet is readily available and for someone who everyday updates himself with Hollywood news instead of having a morning coffee. Twenty something years ago, when internet was inter-what, I kept myself updated by subscribing to US magazine, PREMIERE and Australian magazine, MOVIE. I had a huge stack of both these magazines which kept piling with each month. Many years later I was on crossroads. I was left with no choice but to throw them all when storage space was desperately required for storing, well, more important things. I was in tears that day. And getting over the depression that followed was unbearable.

Okay back to SPARTACUS. To think about it, now I know why I never really heard about it. Firstly, it happened to be a TV series and secondly, like I mentioned in one of my recent post that I’m not much of a TV series fan. All these added up to absence of my knowledge on it. The only two series I completed watching was TWIN PEAKS and FRIENDS. Hopefully soon, SPARTACUS will be listed as the third which is also my best. Sorry FRIENDS.

Umar, a popular local DJ who is also my brother-in-law was repeatedly asking my wife and I to watch SPARTACUS for quite some time. But I never really cared because it so happened to be, yes, a TV series. But he didn’t give up. He kept asking us to watch just one episode and then we can decide on watching the rest of the seasons. I know there was no harm in watching just one episode but I still never cared. When I’m not in the mood to watch anything, usually mood of my wife follows suit. Dozing off is a different matter as long as I’m beside her.

Anyway, a month back, Umar came with his external HDD and saved both seasons and the six-part prequel of SPARTACUS in to my laptop. But I still never gave a thought on watching. Then one night while I was deleting old files to make space for the HDD, I came across the folder that Umar saved the series. I right clicked on the folder and checked how much space it was using. I thought 14.7 GB was just too much for a series I wasn’t going to watch, ever. I deleted it immediately.

Later that night, for no reason I just happened to check SPARTACUS from IMDB. Went through the storyline and some of the reviews and yet remained unconvinced. Then I played the trailer of the second season and my pupils dilated frantically. Then my jaw dropped. By the time the trailer was over, I was about to drool. Suddenly I came to senses. Quickly, I double clicked the recycle bin, right clicked on the folder and restored what was going to entertain my wife and me completely.

We have completed first season of SPARTACUS and last night finished the six-part prequel which was supposedly made to give time for Andy Whitfield who plays the titular character in season one to recover when he was diagnosed with non-Hodgkin lymphoma. But sadly Andy passed away on September 11, 2011.

Of course, Andy Whitfield will remain the heart and soul of the series. My wife would nod her head countless times though I can do with just one on the same fact. But John Hannah as Quintus Lentulus Batiatus almost steals the show as the main antagonist of  season one but surprisingly plays the protagonist of the six-part prequel.

Then there’s Lucretia, wife of Quintus, played to perfection by Lucy Lawless. I must confess that she’s my most favorite character of the first season and the six-part prequel. And in the fifth part of the prequel when Titus, dying father of Quintus asks Lucretia if she’s not the serpent he had thought her to be, her reply would even give shivers to Jupiter. For me it’s the defining moment of her character. From there it was understandable who she really is. Then again who wouldn’t be like her to elevate someone she loves more than life itself. I’m going to sorely miss her in the second season.

From 71 BC to 21st century, last night the three producers of INGILI (Finger), that’s Hussain Munavvaru, Ravee Farooq and I met at L’Aquila. Now that the music score and sound design are almost done, the only remaining post production work is color grading. We have decided to give that task including mastering to Abdulla Muaz who also happened to be one of the only two characters of the film. Yes, he is a brilliant editor who has won best editor at the last Maldives Film Awards held in July this year. And his post production work is remarkable too. He has already agreed verbally.

The releasing of DHILAKANI (Fire Sparks) teaser trailer was delayed to complete the musical installment of its director Hussain Munavvaru’s beloved franchise, KUDAFOOLHU. Ravee who was assigned to produce all the promotional videos of DHILAKANI had to take over the editing of KUDAFOOLHU which has been officially announced for a next week release.

Though Ravee is busy with several works, he’s started storyboarding of EMME MANZAREH (Just One Scene). Hopefully I can sit with him to discuss the storyboard at the end of December.

Well, that’s all for now. I decapitate this post with my rudis until another update. I-am-Spartacus!

Cheers!

ROUGH CUT AND SPARTACUS

Before Editor Ali Shifau Chippe left to India today, I thought director Hussain Munavvaru did sit with him and finalized the rough cut of DHILAKANI (Fire Sparks). But I thought wrong. Munavvaru couldn’t find time because he was too busy with post production of the musical installment of his franchise KUDAFOOLHU scheduled to be released before the end of next week. This means, I only get to see a preview of DHILAKANI once Munavvaru finalizes the editing. Good thing is that I wouldn’t have to wait for two long weeks like I was first told. Chippe is gone only for a week.

Ravee Farooq, who was commissioned to make all the promotional videos including trailers for DHILAKANI, has resumed working on the teaser trailer which he started few weeks back. I’m guessing by next week this trailer will be released. A little while ago, I watched a rough version of it. I wish I could give a description of what I saw but unfortunately, I’m not allowed to leak anything before the releasing. However, I can say this much. It looks cool. There, I’ve said it and I don’t think I’m allowed to say even that much. I’ve breached the contract. I’m guilty and I will be sued, soon or later.

Finally, my prayer for a speedy recovery for INGILI (Finger) composer Mohamed Ikram was answered last night. Director Ravee met with him to finalize the score and sound design of the film. Ravee was completely mesmerized after watching a preview of the film with all the sound and music. This morning he called me and said the score was out of this world, it was this and that. I said, the feeling was all mutual as I felt the same when I watched the same preview. Ravee was out of town at that time shooting the musical of KUDAFOOLHU. Ravee will sit with Ikram tonight as well.

I made few changes to two scenes of EMME MANZAREH (Just One Scene). Ahmed Nadeem, Ravee and Ahmed Zareer praised those amended scenes.

Now that EMME MANZAREH is wrapped up, I have started clearing the remnant of its screenplay from my brain cache. As this process will take few more days, I’m indulging myself with my beloved wife watching SPARTACUS, the television serial. We’re on season one and so far completed three episodes. Not that bad in two nights I guess. Though I’m not that crazy watching TV serials, I kind of fell in love with the stylized violence shown in SPARTACUS. However, I felt each episode contained graphic scenes of violence and sex in slo-mo padded deliberately into the storyline. My wife even wondered if effing was abundantly used during Roman times.

Speaking of TV serials, for the record, the only two serials I completed watching were TWIN PEAKS and FRIENDS. Other than those, I never followed any other serials. I hope to complete SPARTACUS but today I hit an emotional block when I learned that Andy Whitfield who plays the titular character and shares the same birthday as me, died on September 11, 2011. I was so rooting for him in the three episodes I have watched. Now I just don’t feel like watching it. Maybe if I get over this emotional block soon, I will probably resume.

On that sad note, I leave this post for now.

Cheers!

SUGGESTIONS AND CHARACTER ARCS

As planned, this afternoon I met with Ahmed Zareer, my writing partner to discuss the suggestions he had after reading EMME MANZAREH (Just One Scene) rewrite. To begin with, he first thought the entire screenplay was going to be, like the title suggests, just one scene. But I explained to him the reason behind that title. It was called EMME MANZAREH because the narrative goes back to the same scene three times in three different angles which marks the beginning of the three respective acts in the screenplay. He nodded.

His one and only suggestion was on a pivotal scene where he thought that one of the central character was out of personality compared to how that character was built up from the start. After the meeting I went back to my laptop, read and re-read the scene and realized he was actually right. Without any hesitation I rewrote the scene removing some of the dialogues. Now the character in question has a smoother character arc. Awesome!

Then he suggested on the third angle of the murder scene to be changed. But I felt the third angle looked better the way it’s already written. Other than those, Zareer didn’t have more to say. Once again, the foreshadowing really worked just the way I intended as he never expected the shocking twist. He just loved it.

Well that’s all for now. And oh before I finish this post, I mentioned him about  an idea for the next gig I am thinking of writing, this time in collaboration with him. He was interested. More on that later.

Cheers!

QUICKLY AND BRIEFLY

Here’s a quick and a brief update since my last post.

First off, Ali Shifau Chippe has completed the editing of all the wrapped up scenes of DHILAKANI (Fire Sparks). But director Hussain Munavvaru still has 8 major scenes to shoot including some footage for the song. He first scheduled to shoot them this November but postponed it to mid-December due to few schedule clashes with some of the cast.

In the meantime, Munavvaru will sit with Chippe to bring changes to the already completed rough edit. After that I only get to see a preview. But all this has to be done by tomorrow. Chippe leaves to India on Tuesday for no less than 2 weeks.

The unofficial pre-production of EMME MANZAREH (Just One Scene) resumed yesterday at L’Aquila. Ravee and I mostly discussed on the visual style that will be used. And we also discussed on how to shoot the murder scene since it requires shooting from three angles. Ravee will begin storyboarding as soon as he finalizes the score of INGILI (Finger) with Ikram. He was supposed to meet him on Friday night. But Ikram was bedridden with high fever that night. He still is. I wish him a speedy recovery.

On the feedback of EMME MANZAREH, I’m yet to hear from Nadeem and my niece. But on his Facebook status, my writing partner, Ahmed Zareer updated yesterday that he has read the screenplay. And he simply loved the twist. Though he didn’t mention anything about the narrative, all I know is that no one can love a twist if not for a good buildup and meticulous foreshadowing in the narrative. Zareer also said that he doesn’t have anything to say except few suggestions. I love suggestions. That’s why I’m hooking with him over a coffee sometimes this afternoon.

Also on EMME MANZAREH, during the completion of its first write, I spoke with Hussain Munavvaru on producing it. But I later felt that his entire focus needs to be on DHILAKANI and he still has 8 important scenes to complete, I changed my mind when Dark Rain Entertainment (DRE) hinted on producing it. While also in the negotiation stage with DRE, I mentioned about the screenplay to Ibrahim Nifar Thitthi, co-owner of Antharees Production, incase DRE declined. Thitthi was also interested on producing. But I’m glad that DRE honcho Mohamed Ali Moger sealed the deal almost immediately.

Well, that’s all for the time being.

Cheers!

AN UNOFFICIAL PRE-PRODUCTION

Though Dark Rain Entertainment (DRE) honcho Mohamed Ali Moger has verbally agreed on producing EMME MANZAREH (Just One Scene), Ravee and I have already started working on an unofficial casting for the film today. We both want fresh faces and have come up with some names. Ravee has already contacted one potential actor who he thinks is suitable for the role of one of the central characters.

Meanwhile Ravee and I have also started discussing all the scenes of the screenplay individually. When translated to screen,  Ravee too wants the visual to be faithful to the vision of Ahmed Nadeem on whose short story the screenplay is based upon. But most attention will go to the key murder scene where it is shown in three angles. Each angle is the beginning of the three respective acts of the screenplay.

I’m yet to hear the feedback from Nadeem, my niece and my writing partner, Ahmed Zareer.

In other news, Ravee will sit with Ikram tomorrow night to finalize the score of INGILI (Finger). The film’s three producers, Ravee, Hussain Munavvaru and I held a meeting today to discuss on the releasing date. We are still waiting for the completion of the renovation of Olympus Cinema, as if the entire nation has just one cinema. Well, sort of.

Cheers!

VERBALLY AGREED

When Dark Rain Entertainment (DRE) honcho, Mohamed Ali Moger requested for a read of EMME MANZAREH (Just One Scene) just as soon as I updated my Facebook status on completion of the first write, I knew he had an ulterior motive. It was too obvious he wasn’t just planning on reading it and strain his eyes. So without asking any questions, I emailed him a copy immediately. But due to his health at that time, he was unable to read it. And while he was indulging himself with chicken soup and cold tablets, I started work on rewriting the screenplay and completed it a day ago. Even when I emailed a copy of the rewrite, Moger was still feeling unwell. So on his behalf, senior editor and cinematographer of DRE studio, Ali Shifau Chippe read the rewrite and gave it two thumbs up. He really liked the nonlinear narrative and especially loved the ending which took him by surprise.

Last night, I spoke with Moger over the phone and he has come to a decision, thus revealing his intention. He has verbally agreed to produce EMME MANZAREH and appointed director Ravee Farooq to helm it. This is going to be another addition to the series of production deals Ravee and I have with DRE. First one was MIKOE BAPPA BAEY BAEY (Come My Baby’s Father) or in short, MBBB. Once again Ravee’s production company, R Squared and mine, T for 2 Production will be associating with DRE. Principal photography has been tentatively scheduled for early February 2013. Chippe will be taking over cinematography.

Ravee and I have also agreed to produce with DRE the final installment of our two characters/ one location trilogy. We already have a cool title to it but will unveil it later. The plot will have two female characters at one location. Ravee and I produced the first installment, INGILI (Finger) independently with Hussain Munavvaru.

I’m yet to hear from Nadeem, Ravee and my niece on the feedback of EMME MANZAREH rewrite. I have also asked my writing partner, Ahmed Zareer to have a read. Hopefully on Sunday I’ll be getting all the feedbacks. Nadeem has already read the first half and thought it was splendid. I’m hoping he feels the same for the rest of the rewrite.

Last night I watched the edited scenes of DHILAKANI (Fire Sparks) since my last visit to the studio few weeks ago. Director Hussain Munavvaru was also present. After a bit of hiccups in few scenes when I last watched the rough edits, the creativity of director Munavvaru comes strong when the narrative demanded solidity and restraint. The entire cast turns on strong performances and yet again veteran actor Roanu Hassan Manik who was recently awarded with a honorary lifetime achievement shield for performing in theater and films, chews up all the scenes he appears. The man is a true legend. Another actor who shines in her role is Rashfa. Copee Issey remains consistent throughout the scenes I have seen so far. And Mohamed Manik also does an admirable job as a lovelorn politician.

Well, that’s all I have for this post. Until another update I say… what I have to say afterwards is in next line.

Cheers!

REWRITTEN

A day before the scheduled deadline, I have completed the rewrite of EMME MANZAREH (Just One Scene Manzareh) this evening. But that doesn’t mean it’s been wrapped up for good. Sometimes a rewrite gets rewritten several times. Screenplays are all about rewriting over and over again. The more it’s rewritten, the better and solid it gets. However, I will be clattering my keyboard, only if I get additional comments from Ahmed Nadeem, on whose short story the screenplay was based upon. I feel it’s my duty to remain faithful to his vision.

Soon after the completion, I emailed a copy to Nadeem, Dark Rain Entertainment (DRE) honcho, Mohamed Ali Moger and director Ravee Farooq. And there’s one more. I also emailed a copy to a niece of mine. She’s been a regular at commenting all of my indie screenplays. And she has this mysteriously remarkable way of looking in to minor details within my screenplays.

The changes I brought to the rewrite were many. First there was the inclusion of psychedelic visuals and extended some scenes to give a psychedelic mood. The major addition was the music like montage for the progression and eventual deterioration of the relationship between the three central characters which I first outlined yesterday. But today when I started writing that sequence, I felt something was missing. It didn’t bridge. Then I rewrote the compiled montage as full scenes and bingo, they looked more solid, supported the development of the characters and I was able to empathize more with them.

I even incorporated the three songs of Gianscore that Nadeem mailed me yesterday. Using them in the actual film will be up to the producer but the film will have psychedelic songs even if those songs were replaced in case a deal didn’t work out with the band.

That’s all about EMME MANZAREH. Shifting to other news, I met with DHILAKANI (Fire Sparks) editor, Ali Shifau Chippe last night at L’Aquila. He said he’d be completing the editing of the already shot scenes by today since he has to leave to India tomorrow to be with his father who has been hospitalized. My prayers are with his father.

I haven’t been able to watch any of the editing done since my last visit to the studio. Director Hussain Munavvaru is out of town, in Maafushi to shoot another installment to his beloved franchise, KUDAFOOLHU. He will return tomorrow morning including Ravee who I think directed the whole episode.

I’m also eagerly waiting for Ravee to return. He will then sit with composer Mohamed Ikram to finalize the score for INGILI (Finger). I had lunch with the Ikram this afternoon. He confirmed that he will only need just two days with Ravee. Guess that’s all I have for this post.

Cheers!

A PSYCHEDELIC REWRITE

Two nights ago, after discussing the draft screenplay of EMME MANZAREH (Just One Scene) with film reviewer and writer Ahmed Nadeem on whose short story it was based upon, I have started rewriting it today.

Like commented by him, I have rearranged couple of early scenes and removed all of the dialogues from them. They indeed look fantastic now. I have also extended some more scenes especially a scene that calls for quick cut psychedelic visuals that comes with psychedelic music and added some snorricam shots for three more scenes. Yes, changing this way has really added more meaning and much needed darkness to those scenes and the screenplay as a whole. To get inspired while writing the needed psychedelic visuals, I kept playing Help by Deep Purple and The End by The Doors. These two songs really chilled me and opened up my thinking cap making me easier to write. Says who only a joint gives hallucinations? Now I know those songs are called psychedelic for a reason.

Anyway, since this scene required a psychedelic soundtrack in the background, I wrote on using Deep Purple’s Help which was very fitting in every way. But I didn’t think this song could be added without a copyright approval. So I had to seek an alternative. I discussed the issue with Nadeem over the phone immediately. I suggested if he knew any local bands playing local psychedelic songs. He said he’d work on it and an hour later, he mailed me three songs written and performed by a local band called Gianscore. Their music was heavily influenced by The Doors. Their song ‘Veynekay’ which replaced Deep Purple’s Help, felt much more appropriate. And I’m going to use the other two songs for two other scenes. I have already noted these scenes in my new outline. Once pre-production starts, I’m going to suggest whoever is producing to negotiate with Gianscore on using their songs for the film. They were a revelation.

Other new changes brought were addition of a montage like short scenes on how the relationship with the three central characters developed. And this build-up comes inside another psychedelic song and I’m going to use one of the two remaining songs of Gianscore. That’s up to where I stopped the re-write for today and took a rest and decided to blog about the whole experience.

As I type this post, my excitement level keeps rising. The montage sequence I outlined looks flirty and connected by visuals from one scene to another. The screenplay is now looking more solid, dark and of course, psychedelic. Thanks to Nadeem for his constructive suggestions.

On other news, Dark Rain Entertainment (DRE) honcho, Mohamed Ali Moger is yet to recover from his flu and have a go at the draft screenplay. But now I want him to be reading the rewrite. That leaves me with keeping my fingers crossed for few more days. Just to give my fingers some rest, I type off this post for now.

Cheers!