Conversation with Senna Hegde, Movie Director of 0-41*

Senna Hegde, Director and writer of 0-41*, born in Kanhangad of Kasargod district in Northern Malabar. He worked in US for five years as a Business Analyst in an IT firm. He is currently working as a creative director. He has won many awards in advertising including Cannes and Epika.

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0-41*, what is the movie about? 

The story happened in Thoyyamal in Kanhangad. It is a movie about the way of life in Kanhangad. The movie talks about a bunch of boys, spending their five days in a small town, pondering about where their life is headed, what’s happening in and around them, what they think about the world. It is a story set in a small village, it is a tale of two volleyball teams, where one team keeps losing continuously, that starts affecting their dynamics and they became the butt of all jokes.

What prompted you to come into movie making?

I never had a goal but was quite interested in a creative field. I liked to be behind the scene every time. When I grew up, I was exposed to Indie films, low budget movies, Malayalam movies and International films.

Malayalam movies are much ahead of other movies, the kind of writing and making. This gave me lot of motivation. Then I started making plans and writing for making movies, rather than waiting for something to happen, that’s how 0-41* happened. Just took a break from work, came back home, stumbled on the subject, wrote the script in 5 days, started shooting in 10 days. When I look back, I think I am where I am supposed to be.

What made you make a movie with a regional touch?

The real story of real people, has to be regionally specific. We exaggerated their stories to build some drama around them. Every character place themselves with their own name. So they don’t need to fake their dialect, they just speak the way they are. They are from Kanhangad, Northern Malabar, that’s why it sounds so local, in terms of dialect. They are honest to themselves, how you see them in camera is how you see them in real life.

0-41*-Trailer

For Senna Hegde, which is considered to be a good movie?

My movies are never meant for making this world great, but if it does so, it is of course a reward. For me, it is a form of expression. Film making is a way to tell what I am thinking, what I know. I don’t actively seek to make my movies about teaching values.

How could you get the producer for this movie, especially when there are no stars in the flick?

We didn’t seek for any producers. It is a low budget movie. It didn’t have stars. I spoke to few of my friends. We kept the crew very small. It is actually self-funded.

What are the difficulties you faced while filming the movie?

One of the biggest challenge was actors facing the camera. Because these are real people with no background standing in front of the camera. They started becoming quite self-conscious and nervous! We had no workshop because I didn’t want them to lose the innocence. Just 30 minutes before shooting I would take the actors to the location and give them the dialogues. Finance and crew are the other major problems we faced.

Your movie has been appreciated by various artists and has been shown in many international film festivals. How do you feel?

I made the movie for the public. When they watch it and give compliments, I always feel nice. We have been fortunate to be a part of some Film Festivals. The last one was played in New York, where I was nominated for best director. I am very proud of what we have achieved by just sitting in a really small town of Kanhangad.  

How are you going to release the movie commercially?

It is not easy to release a film like this. We can self-distribute, but it costs a lot of money. We don’t have that much of money. If I can raise that amount, we will distribute on a small scale in Northern Malabar and some Multiplexes. I am not actively seeking for a distributor who would want to pick the movie and release it on their own. But if they are willing to buy and release it, we are open to the same. If nothing happens, we will release it online!

We had the bare minimum equipment. We didn’t have a bigger crew for noise control and crowd control. We didn’t even have a monitor. So a lot of time shot looked good on that screen, but when we sat for the editing we found some unwanted stuff. We shot and edited the whole movie in the town Kanhangad and for music and background we had to travel a lot to get the things done.

Any advice for passionate film makers?

I thought I had an interesting subject. I had time and I had friends who believed in my dream and this happened. For me, I believe in stories. You don’t need to have the technical expertise to do a movie. If you know how to tell a story, for me, that makes the movie. So believe in your stories.

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Conversation with P UnniKrishnan, Chairman of SPAC WLL & Bahrain Tribune

Mr. P Unnikrishnan is the Chairman of SPAC WLL and the architect of building successful media brands across the GCC. An acclaimed multilingual writer and orator, Mr. Unni’s philosophy is to ‘inspire’ people, businesses and society through his entrepreneurial initiatives. Spearheading the growth of SPAC through its diversified business activities, he is a regular invitee cum speaker at key socio-economic events across the GCC and in India at various B Schools. Hailing from a family of talented writers and media personalities Mr. Unnikrishnan’s inclination towards the media business was almost by default.

Mr. Unnikrishnan also heads DT News Bahrain, Weekender / Cocunut Times / Adam 2.0, News Mill (India), Daily Talk, 4PM News Bahrain, BigFace publishing (P) Ltd etc.

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Ancestry of Mahakavi (Great Poet) P Kunhiraman Nair and family. Coming from such a background has ever made you more responsible?

Being Frank, I do want to write some novels and poems! I am afraid to do that thinking it can spoil Mahakavis reputation !! 

Please share your interests in literature? 

I love reading books and right now writing one regular editorial column in English – Nothing serious ( DT NEWS ), Ishtapettalum illenkillum ( 4PM news ). I love reading.

When and how have you refined yourself as an entrepreneur?

I am a first gen- businessman. I made mistakes and for sure may continue making mistakes. I consider all the blunders and failures as an experience. My philosophy in business is nothing but to do something good to the society and make some reasonable profit. The Mantra for success in this world is nothing but to run fast other than maintaining  land, manpower, technology and knowledge.

After your studies, why have you moved out of India? Why did you choose Bahrain for your operation?

It was very accidental. My uncle was in Bahrain, He invited me to Bahrain. When I reached here, I found this small island a very comfortable place to settle. 

Radio FM, Daily Tribune, Coconut times, 4PM News  you are operating a lot of media companies. Why into media?

Media – is my passion other than that it is a right medium to help the needy,  Again if you do justice to the profession you can gain social acceptance, power and money!

Tell me the difficulties in starting a venture in Bahrain?

I started my first venture with zero capital. So the life was bit tough. But with few good contacts and trust they had up on me, I managed to initiate the first internet cafe in the Kingdom. Soon I managed to open few more outlets and made some good money .

Is India a tough place to start a venture? 

I won’t make such a comment. May be for someone who managed to do business in Middle East may face some difficulties. It all depends on your expectations and experience. There are so many successful ventures of NRIS in India. But overall there is a fear factor about Kerala among NRIS. But the perception is slowly changing. I am running few outsourcing centres in Kerala and I never had any issues till date.

What are the main agenda/ Ideas that you are trying to promote through your media?

I disagree with the concept of making some agenda for a media firm. The vision is simple that is nothing but to inform and educate. The strategy is to bring interesting innovative interactive informative investigative updated reliable content.

 What are the new business areas you are going to concentrate? And why?

Right now I am working on smart ID which is a digital ID to replace the old conventional business cards and privilege cards and also associated with a mobile money transferring  platform called FULOOSI . I am the Managing Director of KENSHO knowledge solutions and GLOBAL Institute of Management science  which is the only Indian institute for Higher studies in Bahrain. We also represent BYJUS app for the MENA region.

Other than business, what are your personal interests?

Writing, Travelling and sleeping !!! 

You can reach him: P Unnikrishnan, Facebook, Twitter