Theni Eswar is a renowned cinematographer who has currently worked in Ram's
. His other works include director Ram is '
' (2018) and Lenin Bharathi's movie 'MerkuThodarchiMalai'(2016). MerkuThodarchi Malai was produced by actor
, which was released in 2016 and was one among 19 films to get selected for a 21st International film festival of Kerala.
Merku Thodarchi Malai
(MTM) was a story based on the lives of several people living on the borders of Kerala and Tamil Nadu. The film focused on the life cycle of the main character that has no land for farming and travels to the neighboring state.
The film captured beautiful and exotic locales of the border of Kerala and TN under the lens of Theni Eswar. Since the film was based on true story, even the camera had to travel and take note of every bit of villager’s life, who had no formal training in acting.
Theni Eswar has to adjust his camera shot in such a way that villagers lifestyle looked like a documentary shot. One must really laud the efforts of photographer taken in the Western Ghats. In addition, one must highly appreciate the director Lenin Bharathi’s efforts too.
Since MTM was a typical feature film one could say it is also an alternative cinema. Most of the artists in the movie were daily wage workers in TN and Kerala, to make them feel less conscious about the camera, DOP Theni Eswar had to do with artificial lights, and shoot the part of the movie with natural lights only.
One a few night scenes were shot in artificial lights. Only those lights used in wedding processing were made use of and the shot was captured with those electric bulbs that are used in these regions.
The camera work was indeed challenging for Theni Eswar. Even the hilly slope was a challenging area to shoot for the cameraman. Camera equipment was taken to the top of the mountain. The whole unit used to start climbing the mountain at morning 4 am and reach the hilltop by 6:30, climbing 72kms at stretch. All the efforts taken by the unit, helped Eswar to win an award.
Even before the movie could hit the theatres, the film already had won the award for the cinematographer and for another category too in several film festivals. For DOP Theni Eswar, it was a pride moment of joy, as the film got for him Best Cinematography award at the recent Bioscope Global Film Festival in Punjab. There were 250 entries for this award from different parts of the world and Theni fetched this most coveted award so far for any Tamil films.
After the release of ‘Taramani’ which is written and directed by Ram, he was also working for Bala’s '
' featuring Jyothika and G. V.Prakash Kumar in the leads. In this movie, he handles the cinematography part of the movie.
'Peranbu' is another upcoming bilingual (Tamil and Malayalam) drama film written and directed by Ram, which stars Mammootty and Anjali in lead roles. The film expects its release in mid-2018. In this movie, Eswar is handling the photography part.
Do you all remember the movie ‘Azhagarsamiyin Kudhirai’, a 2011 Tamil-language mystery dramedy film directed by Suseenthiran? This movie also had cinematography by Theni Eswar.