When the audience put on their 3D glasses during the trailer launch of upcoming trilingual film, 2.0, held in Chennai on November 3, they were in not just for a visual treat but for a new experience in sound. Launched using a technology called ‘SRL 4D sound’, the man behind it — Oscar award-winner and sound designer Resul Pookutty — said that it was the result of two years of work.
Explaining the technology, director S Shankar said that when he visualised 2.0 in 3D, he also contemplated on making its sound in 4D.
“We all know that there are speakers placed above, below, on the sides, front and behind in the hall, but this is the first time there are speakers below our feet. There was potential in my story where we could capture the happenings on the ground,” he said.
2.0, the sequel of Enthiran: The Robot, stars South Indian superstar Rajinikanth and marks the Tamil cinema debut of Bollywood actor Akshay Kumar. The film, which has been in the making for four years, will once again see Rajinikanth playing dual roles of Vaseegaran, the scientist and Chitti the robot. Kumar will play the antagonist, while actress Amy Jackson is paired opposite Rajnikanth.
While little is known about the film’s actual plot, the sci-fi trailer reveals a clash between scientist Vaseegaran (played by Rajnikanth) who reactivates Chitti to fight Dr Richards (Kumar).
There is clearly a message about the ill effects of today’s technology through the large use of mobile phones and possibly effecting the environment. The tag line of film is “The world is not only for humans”.
When the video of the song Endhira Logathin Sungari was played in 3D format, it transported viewers into another world.
Initially, Shankar had not planned for any songs in the film, said Rahman. “Now the album has four. The background score is being worked on, involving a 100 member orchestra from London along with a forty piece choir from Mumbai.”
Calling Rajnikanth his favourite hero, Rahman said that the actor’s rise to stardom beating all odds has always inspired him since he was young.
“After the Oscar win, I wanted to retire at 40, but while working with Rajnikanth in Enthiran, I was astounded by Rajini sir’s love for cinema and that he continues working even at this age,” said Rahman.
To a question on what kept him going, Rahman said, “Music itself inspires me. It is a gift given from my father. This is my service to him and God. Working on ‘2.0’ was like working on eight films. The music has gone through several changes over the course of time.”
Shankar’s films are known for its social messages. 2.0 has one too as is evident from the trailer where Kumar’s character says, “Every cell phone user is an aggressor”.
About Rajinikanth, Shankar said, “He has a style and a mass image. Whatever he does is wonderful. Every time he plays a role, it is a fresh performance.”
The director first worked with Rajnikanth on Shivaji in 2007. His last was Enthiran in 2010.
Sharing memories from the sets, Shankar recalled that during filming of the climax action scenes in Delhi, Rajnikanth injured his knee, yet ignored it and continued working. It was action master Stunt Silva who noticed the bleeding and alerted the director. Rajnikanth was then taken to hospital and given few stitches.
“In that heat of Delhi, he was wearing this metallic costume weighing over 12kg and performing action stunts. He was not keeping good health too. It is this dedication that makes him a superstar,” smiled Shankar.
His word of advice, “Don’t make films to suit the convenience of an actor or a producer or a technician. Choose a good subject first and then choose the team.”
When Rajnikanth spoke, he looked back to the time when Shankar narrated the story to him. “I did not question Shankar on its possibility, having worked earlier with him.”
He shared that during the filming of 2.0, he became unwell.
“I could not remember my lines and had lost my self confidence. So, I expressed to Shankar that I could not continue working on the film and wish to return the payments received. But Shankar made me comfortable allowing me to work at my pace.”
Praising producer Subaskaran, Rajnikanth said, “I found a friend in him. Subaskaran insisted that I first take care of my health. He was willing to wait for me even if it was for four years.”
Rajnikanth was sure that 2.0 made at Rs5.5 billion will be a super hit. “It will collect more than Rs6 billion.”
Boasting of a talented team that includes cinematographer Nirav Shah, sound designer Resul Pookutty, art director Muthuraj and VFX Supervisor V. Srinivas Mohan, 2.0 is eagerly awaited. Will it set the screens on fire like Chitti says in the trailer?
The answer will be revealed on November 29, when it releases world over.
AKSHAY KUMAR ON HIS TAMIL DEBUT
At the trailer launch of ‘2.0’ a trilingual in Hindi, Tamil and Telugu, held in Chennai, Akshay Kumar impressed the audience with his Tamil speech, spoken haltingly and with effort.
Calling Shankar “a scientist and not a director” Kumar said that working in an epic film like 2.0 was a great learning experience. This was the first time in his 28 year-long-career that Kumar has worn so much make-up. His prosthetics included coloured lens and false teeth. Not to forget his heavy costume.
“It took three-and-a-half hours to put on make-up and one and a half hours for its removal.”
When questioned on the fitness regime that he is known to follow religiously, Kumar called it a routine learnt from his father, an army man. He enjoyed being up every morning at 4am for workouts.
“It is not something forced on me. My body is a temple and I will do it for the rest of my life,” said Kumar who prided himself on having watched the sun rise every day,” said Kumar.