Unfateful is a 2020 English-Kannada Indian independent Film written directed and produced by Seby Varghese. Starring all new comers Janavi Nagarajan, Aakash Mohanty, Sarat Prakash, Bharat N Simha, Darshan Shankar, Sanjith Ballal (AKA Sanaran) and Seby Varghese, the film was shot on IPhone 7 Plus on a minimalist approach. The film marks the debut Seby Varghese as writer-director. The micro budget road film was shot frugal, following Guerrilla filmmaking across three states of South India - Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh. The film was partially funded through a Crowdfunding campaign run on Wishberry.to raise finishing funds for the film. The film was selected at the XVIII Cine Pobre Film Festival
Inspired from El Mariachi by Robert Rodriguez and film makers like Satyajit Ray, Steven Soderbergh and others who made their first film with minimal resources, the film is a change from the contemporary model of film making followed in India. The team that was put together to make the film was a completely novice young cast and crew (except for the music director Mariano Saulino).
Set in an unknown location on the roads of South India, Four strangers, Punya, Aditya, Martin and Mithun carpool a journey to Gokarna. On the course of the journey the four encounter run-away goons Krishnna, Koti and Raju and the twisted tale kicks off as the four strangers find their moral compass put to its ultimate test.
Seby Varghese wrote the story of Unfateful while working as an Audit Senior with Grant Thornton SSC, Bangalore. The inspiration for a road film came from a journey with friends. The first draft of the screenplay was completed by January 2017. Being a self taught film maker and having no contacts in the film fraternity, the decision was made to self-fund the film instead of adopting the traditional film financing model. Shelly.J.Morais whom Seby had met during his internship at Nirvana Films, Bangalore came on board as one of the Executive Producers of the film. The first draft of the screenplay was then pitched to Cinematographer Karthick Raj, and sound editor Jai Ganesh Kalaiselvan who agreed to work on the film. A test shoot was conducted in the outskirts of Bangalore using a D.S.L.R. However, the shoot failed to provide the required results. Another Test shoot was conducted using a Canon 5D Mark III. But that too was a failure, considering the micro budget aspect of the film. The team then worked on the possibilities of making the film using an IPhone 7 Plus and after initial discussions, the test shoot was conducted around Magadi, Karnataka by the end of January 2017. The test shoot was a success. By the end of March 2017, Seby took a sabbatical of nine months and started assembling the production team. On April 8, 2017, a casting call was placed looking for actors. Sarat Prakash, Aakash Mohanty, Janavi Nagarajan, Bharat N Simha, Darshan Shankar were cast for the film. An upcoming Kannada rapper Sanjith Ballal (AKA Sanaran) was later cast for the role of Raju in the film. Considering the Guerrilla Filming nature of the film, a lot of planning went into deciding the kind of roads that the film would be shot. An extensive location scouting was carried out travelling through remote landscapes of South India. Meanwhile 5 more drafts of the screenplay was made as the discussions progressed. The actors and the direction team were brought to Bangalore. A technical team under Karthick, made two DIY rigs from scratch for the film that could be remotely controlled. It was decided that the production shall begin by end of July. As weeks passed by the casting was completed except for the role of Aditya. Two weeks of rigorous table reading prepared the actors for their roles. With the schedule dates approaching, Seby decided the play the part himself. With a cast and crew of 15 members, the team went to production on August 1, 2017
After an unsuccessful first attempt, the core team met together and worked out a new plan of action. Two more schedules were planned and were successfully executed. With the funds shrinking and the sabbatical ending, the team went to Film Bazaar 2017, Goa organized by NFDC India, to find co-producers only to be disappointed by the lack of interest of traditional producers. However, the team met a kickstarter inspired Indian crowdfunding platform Wishberry and decided to opt for crowdfunding to find finishing funds for the film. Seby quit his job in October 2018. The team was able to raise finishing funds by running a successful crowd funding campaign. By the beginning of January 2019, Another schedule was carried out successfully completing the principal photography on the film. However on their way back, the Mitsubishi Lancer which was one of the main props in the film met with a fatal accident. Everybody in the car survived. However, with just patch work schedule pending, the production had to be halted. In the meantime, with the assigned editor leaving the film, Cyril Joseph, an IT Professional who had quit his job to pursue his career in film making came onboard as editor and completed the edit of the film and the film moved further into post-production. The film was completed on March 2020.
Unfateful was shot across three states of South India, Guerrilla style. Some of the chief locations of the shoot include, Gandikota, Belum Caves, Pulivendula, Gokarna, Karnataka, Chennai, Kalyandurg and Bangalore etc.
Janavi Nagarajan as Punya Aakash Mohanty as Martin Sarat Prakash as Mithun Seby Varghese as Aditya Bharat N Simha as Krishnna Darshan Shankar as Koti Sanjith Ballal (AKA Sanaran) as Raju Shelly J Morais as the Biker
Unfateful (2020 film)
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