Direction Dreams: 'Vijay can add magic to any script'
This weekly column brings to you a promising assistant director, and their aspirations, and this week it is Dwarkesh Prabakar D, assistant to AR Murugadoss
Interview with Dwarkesh Prabakar D
Director worked with: AR Murugadoss
Responsibilities: Casting, visual effects and associate direction
Films worked on: Spyder and Vijay 62
What do you best like about Murugadoss?
How he is driven by morals and ideals. He is a person whose actions are directed by moral beliefs. He tries to help out every assistant director in every way possible. He is the first one to help us when we have trouble learning anything; he helps those who used to work in his school and at times, even tries to make financial contributions to help out families.
What is the one thing that you have learnt from him?
I learnt how to write intelligently. I now know both how to add interesting elements to a script, and also what not to add.
What’s one area of filmmaking that you are had a tough time with?
Visual Effects. Spyder had lot of scenes which required quality VFX to convey grandeur. I learned how to keep an eye out for the intricate details.
What would you like to change about Tamil cinema?
The attitude that profit-making is only the responsibility of producers. Directors should inculcate the art of making films with the right mixture of commercial viability and mature filmmaking. I feel the problem nowadays is that the scale tips one way or the other.
What’s the oddest thing you have seen or done as an AD?
We were shooting for Spyder, and the scene in question had a boulder rolling on the streets. The shoot was happening in Hyderabad and around 1,000 artists were involved. I had a squabble with a young female artiste who insisted she needed a break. This grew into a fight and we threw unnecessary words at each other. It was then that I realised that my temper was not useful at all in solving the problem. From that day, I decided to embrace a calmer way of doing things. What many years couldn’t do, a single junior artiste did.
What are you working on now?
I have written a script that has the feel of a breezy family drama.
Debut films are often the result of compromises. What’s one area you will never compromise on?
I think that’s exactly why I chose a simple script for my debut film. I'm ready to compromise on any aspect as long as it doesn't affect the quality of the output. I must first prove my worth instead of simply relying on the brand value of Murugadoss to get me work.
What do you think you can bring to Tamil cinema if given an opportunity to direct?
I would like to churn out films with a runtime of less than two hours.
What’s the best thing about being an AD?
That you get the best of both worlds. You get to explore every aspect of filmmaking without facing any pressure or accountability.
Have you ever been star-struck?
By Vijay, yes. He is so down to earth. You will not believe that someone like him can be so simple and quiet. His other remarkable quality is how he can add magic to any script. He knows exactly how to make a scene memorable.