Raam Reddy explains why his Kannada film, Thithi, from last year’s festival circuit, is trending now.
RAAM Reddy is flying high with the success of his debut film, Thithi, which won the National Award for best Kannada film this year. It is now awaiting its national release on June 3. While it premiered last August at the Locarno International Film Festival in Switzerland, the film’s journey truly began with its screening at the 2014 NFDC Film Bazaar in Goa, where it was adopted by Sunmin Park, the international film producer, and exhibited in film festivals across the world. Thithi has already impressed the likes of Francis Ford Coppola and Anurag Kashyap, while its Karnataka release earlier this month raked in Rs 5 crore at the box office. “I feel that today’s distributors are willing to expose good regional cinema to a wider audience in the domestic circuit. Recent examples being Lucia (Kannada) and Sairat (Marathi),” Reddy says.
Thithi is a playful film with a cast of amateur actors, set in rural Karnataka, in the village of Mandya. It revolves around Century Gowda, a cranky 101-year-old man who dies in the very first scene, and the events that lead to the thithi, the 11th day ceremony.
Talking about how the film came about, Reddy reveals, “Having tried many forms of art, I felt that ideas are best expressed through films. After film school, I travelled with Eregowda, a writer and a childhood friend, to his native village looking for a story that we could tell. We explored the landscape, talked to people and decided to do something cinematic while keeping the plot as close as possible to reality.”