A cel­lu­loid dream

Movie-maker Ka­mal G in­cor­po­rates state-of-the-art tech­nol­ogy with a star-stud­ded cast to come up with his Malaysian de­but, writes

New Straits Times - - Bots -

OS­CAR-award win­ning mu­sic com­poser A.R. Rah­man’s huge por­trait hangs on the wall of the staid of­fice. An an­tique, golden grama­phone sits in the cor­ner, right be­hind the pol­ished, wooden ta­ble that oc­cu­pies half the work­ing space. Sean Con­nery’s is care­fully placed on the ta­ble along­side the mu­sic mae­stro’s bi­og­ra­phy.

The calm air be­lies the en­ergy moviemaker Ka­mal G, 33, thrives on for in­spi­ra­tion: Mu­sic.

“I’m a die-hard Rah­man fan. I know each and every song that has been re­leased. His mu­sic is my life ref­er­ence,” he ad­mits, un­abashedly.

Ipoh-born Ka­mal who is the man­ag­ing di­rec­tor of Dhanan­woodd Films, was the of­fi­cial pho­tog­ra­pher of Rah­man’s con­certs in Malaysia in 2016.

This time, the am­bi­tious Ka­mal G di­rec­tor man­aged to rope in Rah­man to com­pose a mu­si­cal score for his starstud­ded first movie, star­ring lo­cals Syam­sul Yu­sof, Nora Dan­ish, Pu­teri Balqis, Adi Pu­tra and Nu­rul Huda.

Ka­mal has a Bach­e­lor of Sci­ence in Net­work Com­put­ing from Napier Uni­ver­sity, the United King­dom and a Bach­e­lor of Sci­ence in In­for­ma­tion Tech­nol­ogy from Sun­way

Ka­mal G on the set with his crew. Uni­ver­sity Col­lege. He pre­vi­ously worked at Shell, EDS and Hewlett Packard as project man­ager.

Ka­mal’s im­pres­sive mo­tion posters of

that were launched re­cently cre­ated a buzz; it is the first time mo­tion posters have been done for a lo­cal movie.

It was also an­nounced that an aug­mented re­al­ity trailer plus a con­ven­tional one would be re­leased for the movie, ramp­ing up ex­pec­ta­tions.

Ka­mal was ex­posed to the art of movie-mak­ing at a young age as it runs in the fam­ily.

“I got my first SLR cam­era when I was 9 years old. My fa­ther has ac­tu­ally done a num­ber of dra­mas in In­dia and here. He even shot a movie. Due to un­fore­seen cir­cum­stances, it did not see the light of day,” ex­plains Ka­mal, who is a fan of Hol­ly­wood di­rec­tor James Cameron and South In­dian di­rec­tor Mani Rat­nam.

“He will pro­cure cam­eras and other edit­ing and movie-mak­ing equip­ment and keep them in the house. I got ex­tremely fas­ci­nated with all that; it made me cu­ri­ous.

“Some film di­rec­tors in the 1940s and 1950s have done a tremen­dous job. So I started do­ing some re­search. Back then, there was no Google or YouTube so I had to do the re­search man­u­ally. It was te­dious,” he says with a laugh, adding that his room was the go-to place to watch movies in col­lege.

He even made sure his mates were not sup­port­ing piracy, es­pe­cially when his favourite di­rec­tors re­leased new movies.

Ka­mal counts as among the movies that evoke in him awe and ad­mi­ra­tion, fu­elling his pas­sion and in­ter­est in the field.

“That’s when I re­alised that my pas­sion lies in movie-mak­ing.”

His aca­demic back­ground took him to an­other level as he started to ex­plore dig­i­tal tech­nol­ogy in the movie-mak­ing in­dus­try.


has many firsts. Apart from be­ing the first in Malaysia to carry Rah­man’s mu­sic, and mo­tion posters, the movie, which is in its fi­nal post-pro­duc­tion stage, was shot us­ing cut­ting-edge tech­nol­ogy.

Ac­cord­ing to Ka­mal, the en­tire movie was shot us­ing Ger­man-made Cooke Op­tics, spe­cially flown from Bol­ly­wood.

“The two sets of Cooke Op­tic lenses were be­ing used by the crew of Shah Rukh Khan’s

and Ra­jnikanth’s For­tu­nately, we re­ceived a call at the last minute in­form­ing us that the shoot­ing of Dil­wale had wrapped up and the lenses were avail­able,” says Ka­mal, adding that he in­sisted the com­pany despatch the same team used by Dil­wale to shoot

The range of Cooke Op­tic lenses. Makri­fat C

as the lenses were sen­si­tive and had to be han­dled care­fully.

“If it even moves one inch, you will not be able to fo­cus; it has to be per­fect.”

The graph­ics and colour grad­ing for the movie were done by three teams — In­dia’s Prasad Corp Group, which did the graph­ics for the high­est gross­ing movie in In­dia, Digi9 (the team that is work­ing on Rah­man’s movie project, touted to be the first vir­tual re­al­ity movie in the world) and

When asked why he em­ploys for­eign ex­per­tise, he sim­ply an­swers: why not?

“We are ac­tu­ally lever­ag­ing knowl­edge. Even in the IT sec­tor, when we col­lab­o­rate

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