An online mockumentary tries to keep alive the Steel Flyover issue in people’s minds
It’s a great time to be an activist. Causes abound in today’s age, with tempers shooting at the drop of a hat. You could go participate in a silent march, form a human chain or even better, just sit back in your couch and show your anger to the world with a tap, through your FB status update. Only if we all thought like this, causes that really mattered would seize to exist. The most recent case in point is the protest against the proposed steel flyover (from Chalukya Circle to Hebbal) in Bengaluru that seems to have lost its steam.
But all is not lost in a democracy, where freedom of speech is held high. The team at Fullmeals Film Studio has validated this spirit with #SteelFlyoverBekuBeda — a mockumentary that ‘exposes’ how badly Bengalureans really want the proposed steel flyover. The film showcases ‘citizens’ of Bengaluru voicing their opinions on whether the steel flyover is needed (beku) or not (beda).
A hilarious six-and-a-half-minute film, released online in the last week of January, it has garnered 10,000 plus views and counting. “It was a burning issue last year. It peaked, then it plateaud and is now slowing down, even as the government is continuing its preparation towards building the flyover,” says Rajeev Ravindranath, from Fullmeals, adding, “so we are doing what we do best. We are telling the steel flyover story just to remind people about the issue.” Ideated, scripted and directed by Rajeev and Prashanth Nair, the mockumentary was shot and edited by Harris Backer, and produced by Aneesh Govind — all of them from Fullmeals. Though the film was made recently, the team has been actively participating in the protests against the project since day one.
“I was one of the participants at the human chain protest that happened in October last year. At that time, what left us perplexed was the reaction from the government authorities. They said that only a small number of affluent people are protesting whereas most people want the flyover. So, through this film, we have given an imaginary voice to those ‘people’ the government is referring to,” says Prashanth. Well-known faces from the city such as cricket commentator Charu Sharma, RJ and actor Danish Sait, theatre artiste Aporup Acharya and others star in this mockumentary. “We are voting with our tone of (sarcastic) voice because we know
we would be terrible at serious debating,” says Rajeev with a laugh. Prashanth adds, “Humour is the best way to communicate. It sparks conversations and helps in keeping the cause alive in people’s minds.”
— Ayesha Tabassum