Making of the fort sequence

One of the biggest challenges of shooting a period piece is lighting, as the options for illumination were restricted to natural sources “To capture the olden times in an authentic way, we have to recreate the results of oil lamps. Our team tried test shoots to stimulate those light sources. For example, we tested gaslights and gas pyres. I had also tried to generate the flicker effect caused by flames by synchronizing the lights onto a DMX board.”

For the battle sequence in the fort, the team erected a massive set in Hyderabad, which was digitally extended in post “The scene involves over a two-thousand people breaking into a fort. So in that vast exteriors, we optimized the usage of bonfire lights to illuminate the castle.”

To capture the faces and the action taking place during night, Rathnavelu and his gaffer, Guna, arranged a painstakingly conceived lighting scheme to create moonlight “We used four 200 ft industrial cranes to suspend custom-designed lights from a higher altitude, so that the moonlight created is uniformly spread across the landscape.

The output has come off brilliantly and even Greg (Powell) was thrilled by the lighting and said ‘Man you should be there (in Hollywood)’ ” Rathnavelu recounted with a sense of elation. He then added that the presence of warmer lights in that sequence also signified the small victories that were won by Narasimha Reddy’s army.