'WWW' is a cyber-thriller directed by KV Guhan. In this interview, the filmmaker says why he roped in Adith Arun for the lead role. Also featuring Shivani Rajasekhar and other talented actors, the thriller is headed for a direct OTT release later this month. In this exclusive interview with Ragalahari, find out what Guhan has to say about the virtual hostage thriller.
We were all in lockdown last year. It was a big existential crisis for the film industry. We were living in a new world. Nobody had ever thought such a day would come. I then questioned myself if we can do a film set in a room. My daughter was studying in Singapore. When the lockdown was imposed, we were not sure when we would be able to meet her. There was a sense of insecurity in the air. It triggered a fear of a hostage situation. This is when I thought up a subject like this one: 'WWW' ('Who, Where, Why').
In the entire film, there is no camera movement. Only the artists keep moving. I roped in actors who I believed would understand the subject thoroughly. I had introduced Adith Arun 10 years ago in Tamil. In the last 10 years, he has grown up a lot as an actor. He was excited listening to the story. Shivani Rajasekhar, Priyadarshini and others joined the cast later.
But for Adith, this film wouldn't have existed. For the antagonist's role, we needed someone who looked cranky. I liked Sandeep Bharadwaj in 'Killing Veerapppan', which is directed by Ram Gopal Varma. He is soft off-screen but on-screen, he is different. He is a theatre artist. He has done a fabulous job.
We made this film almost at the fag end of the lockdown. The unlock process was happening slowly. We rented a place and only the main crew members were present on set. Only 25 people were present. We made 'WWW' with a very small crew.
'WWW' is a complete thriller. I did 100% of my job, while the music (by Simon K King) did 200%. I had worked with Simon previously. When it came to BGM, it's one of the best works in recent times. He is in sync with the spirit of a film. If Mani Ratnam found AR Rahman, I am glad that I have found Simon. He understands a story thoroughly and delivers the output.
'WWW' was made for OTT initially. As the scale of the film grew, we wanted to go for a theatrical release. But due to the sub-optimal theatrical situation, we have gone for an OTT release. Even now I can say that a theatrical release would have been apt for the movie. Anyways, it's going to be an OTT release and I am confident the viewers are going to enjoy the film.
OTT films are in competition with international content. Your idea has to be worthwhile, no excuses are allowed. 'WWW' is a virtual hostage thriller. It's a challenging subject.
Being a cinematographer, I knew what it takes to do an experiment of this sort. How to keep the viewer engaged in the story is something I was very particular about. A lot depends on the artists' performances. This feature is integral to Alfred Hitchcock's movies.
My next film is 'Highway' and it stars Anand Deverakonda in the lead. It's a thriller, too. It's in the post-production phase. I don't like making template-driven movies. I am a Tamilian and if you want to do a typical commercial film, you have to understand the nativity of the language. Otherwise, you shouldn't do it.
'WWW' is going to release in all major South Indian languages, not just Telugu. I am expecting the audience in Tamil to lap up the movie in a big way. The film might be released in mid-December. The precise date is yet to be finalized by the OTT platform.