The Rebel in the Indian Express


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Express News  Services               
Thiruvananthapuram, Jan 15: One would easily mistake her for one of the film buffs who have arrived in droves here.  Rajashree, national award winner for the best short fiction film of the year, got help from even onlookers while she was busy preparing posters of her film at one of the festival venues here. Maybe her girl-next-door look had something to do with it.  “The focus at the festival is on feature films and naturally, I had to do something to let the delegates know about my film, The Rebel. I started making posters out of newspapers and soon, there were people helping me out. We even made one from a shoe box,” said Rajashree, who looks younger than her age 26.
       All the efforts paid off. The 30 minutes film, haunting in the true sense and amply displaying the sincerity of the film-maker was screened to a virtually packed house today. The music in the film is evocative but the applause at the end of it all must have sounded better to the film maker. “This is my diploma film. The institute provides the equipment, the film to shoot and also Rs, 4,000 for production. This is inadequate. My cameraman, sound recordist and myself pitched in with money and completed the project. Sulabha Deshpande did not even take a single paisa for the film,” Rajashree told ENS.
       The young director was into street theatre not so long ago and is willing to give it a go even now. She has also directed a documentary Paravatibai – A Ragpicker’s story, assisted Saeed Mirza  in the scripting of a teleserial. and produced a documentary which was titled The Camel’s Story.
           Rajashree is currently learning Kathak and Dhrupad but has no plans of taking up either dance or music as a career. “They will help me in my film–making. I would also like to write a novel. It is a dream but who knows, it might just come true”.
       The young director is working on a film script now and will shortly be submitting it to the NFDC. Although an award has come her way with her first film. Rajashree is clear that films which do nothing but travel the festival circuit are an absolute no-no for her. “I would like my films to reach out to the public. Critical acclaim is important but the final word is that of the public,” she said.
       The film narrates the tale of a teenage boy who feels betrayed by his mother because she has set up a family with his stepfather and child. He does not fit in there and feels terrible lonely. The boy finds solace with an old woman next door. Her death shatters him, though ultimately he reconciles with his mother.