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India Currents gave me a voice in days I was very lost. Having my articles selected for publishing was very validating – Shailaja Dixit, Executive Director, Narika, Fremont

Proving their mettle and showcasing the vibrant talent across boundaries, Indian American filmmakers are now creating a space of their own, gaining acclaim and recognition from different international film festivals across the world. Fall (2018), a short film by Vigil Bose, is one such attempt. The film has received seventeen awards and fourteen nominations so far from various International film festivals held in India, Italy, and US, for best experimental film and superb performances.

Trying to deliver a unique perspective of psychological trauma faced by undercover operatives on their return from high-risk America’s anti-insurgent operations, Fall is an experimental short film that conveys a myriad of emotions through images and the power of silence. “It is a humble attempt to explore the lives of veterans, whom I admire a lot in my life,” says Vigil Bose, who is the writer, director and cinematographer for the film. “The story and characters are built around the traumatic occurrences, internal conflicts and stressful experiences that an undercover agent encounters in life. I have tried to experiment and convey the intensity of emotions through different shots rather than heavy exchange of dialogues” .  Produced by Three Eye Visuals, the cast of the short film includes Jiju Nair, Praveen Kumar, Sindhu Nair and Jon Feidl.

Describing the wonderful journey and hard work that went into the making of the film, the lead actor, Jiju Nair stated, “I was always on the lookout of a character that is really challenging and socially inclined and when Vigil approached me, I was more than happy to take up this project. The role not just required me to train physically but also to emotionally understand a character that is very complex and mysterious, and for which I had no model to study or look upon.” Jiju also added that the movie is an attempt to establish the presence of Indian American actors on the global stage.

Indian actors and filmmakers have been trying to create an imprint of their own in Hollywood for years. Still, the impact and representation is very small though changes are booming in the recent past. “Our movie-making is an attempt to change the representation and participation of Indian actors and filmmakers in the Hollywood industry. It is the main reason why I chose an Indian actor to portray a lead role in my film that focused on US undercover agents. The creative talent of Asians, especially Indians need to be explored and given more opportunities to flourish. Actors like Priyanka Chopra in Quantico are slowly paving the way for the change but more augmenting measures are required,” opined Vigil. He and Jiju Nair share a strong background in theatre, having acted together on numerous stages in Kochi, Kerala. Even though both of them are IT professionals, it is this same passion for art that brought them together to pursue their dream after so many years.

Their debut short film, Fall, has won awards at Oniros Film Awards, Italy for best cinematography, supporting actor, supporting actress; best experimental film and jury award at LakeView International Film Festival; gold award for best supporting actor, silver award for best actor, silver award for best editor, bronze award for best short film at Virgin Spring Cinefest; best short film-bronze award, best cinematography-silver award, best actor-bronze award, best actress-bronze award and best supporting actor-platinum award at Mindfield Film Festival, Albuquerque, NM, as well as several nominations and official selections at various prestigious film festivals across the globe.

The duo plan to take the short film to a next level of a motion picture in the future and are looking out for local investors. They are also working together to set out different business plans to host and distribute the movie, with a special focus on streaming media like Youtube Red and Amazon

“We have received tremendous feedback so far and hence would surely be working towards taking the movie to the next level,” added Vigil, who is currently also working on another forthcoming project, Chained, facing the camera as an actor after a long gap of 16 years. To relish the pure joy of creativity and attainment in life, both Vigil and Jiju now aim to continue and invest more time in exploring future opportunities in the movie industry.

Fall (2018). Director: Vigil Bose. Writers: Vigil Bose, Sujil Chandra Bose. Cast: Jiju Nair, Praveen Kumar, Sindhu Nair and Jon Feidl. Produced by: Three Eye Visuals.

Suchithra Pillai comes with nearly a decade’s experience in the field of journalism, exploring and writing about people, issues, and community for many leading publications in India and Denver, Colorado. In her spare time, you can find her scribbling down some thoughts in paper trying to find a rhyme or story out of small things, or expressing her love for dance on stage.

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Suchithra Pillai

Tell-A-Story is a venture into video storytelling, founded by Suchithra Pillai, who comes with over 15 years of experience in the field of journalism, exploring and writing about people, issues, and community...