Singer-lyricist Mohammed Maqbool Mansoor of ‘Mukkathe Penne…’ fame turns director with ‘Om’
When singer and lyricist, Mohammed Maqbool Mansoor, and his friend, actor Ashwin Kkumar, got together, they jammed, discussed films and their pet ideas. This led to an impromptu photo shoot and a few months later, a musical short was born. ‘Om’, released on YouTube recently, conceived and directed by Maqbool and featuring Ashwin, followed no script or plan. “The concept, visuals and the music synced perfectly,” he says.
It depicts Siva with an ash-smeared body, dreadlocks hanging loose, holding the damaru and doing the tandav (Lord Siva’s dance). It captures the raw power of Nature and its connection to humans. Shot in minimal light, the short is an exploration of the five elements. A gushing waterfall in a mini forest near Pala served as a location and the thunder showers that came down while shooting added to the effect, says Maqbool.
Ashwin Kkumar and Mohammed Maqbool Mansoor
Abhiram, who created the music, chose a blend of genres, carefully avoiding lyrics. “We wanted the viewer to form his or her own impressions without being influenced by words,” Maqbool says.
This is Maqbool’s first attempt at making an independent single. He shot to fame with the song ‘Mukkathe Penne …’ in Ennu Ninte Moideen, having written and sung it. Though he learnt filmmaking, Maqbool veered towards singing and writing. He sang a couple of songs for composer Gopi Sundar.
“The inspiration for this short came from the first vibration of the universe, ‘Om’, and its Sufi equivalent ‘Hu’, which have been a constant source of fascination for me. I have always wanted to explore it in my own way,” says Maqbool. “It is a collaborative effort and we are happy with the way it has turned out.”
The cinematography is by Arjun Ramesh and Arun Dhamodharan. Edited by Bibin Paul Samuel, the sound designing is by Rajeesh K Ramanan. VFX is by Jimjin while Jishad Shamsudheen has designed Ashwin’s costume. Produced by Cavemen pictures, the video has been released under the label of Muzik247.