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Interview Team : Sudharshan

Behindwoods Tamil Cinema Progressive is a new initiative to recognize and laud individuals who have associated themselves with gutsy new-wave cinema with an eye on taking Tamil cinema forward.

CV Kumar plunged into the industry in 2012, with Attakathi and almost turned the market around with his cult movies Pizza and Soodhu Kavvum. In a matter of two years, the producer has built a strong brand for himself and his company, Thirukumaran Entertainment. His eye for out of the box ideas is what makes him one of the most respected filmmakers in the industry. The leading producer takes time to talk to about his approach to ‘progressive cinema’.



Vission and Mission statement of Thirukumaran entertainments…

There’s nothing in particular actually. We do not restrict ourselves to particular genre of films. We appreciate all new efforts. But our primary ambition is to build up a good brand and survive the longest in the industry.


Core idea and thought process when choosing to release a film with lesser known unheralded names associated with it.

This is a huge myth. Every movie has its business and similarly every actor has their business. We only look at the outcome. There’s another side to it, which is the investment. When you need star power, you invest more on it.

When you manufacture something at Rs 5, you cannot sell them for Rs 500. Similarly, you cannot expect a movie, which is made on a budget of Rs 3 crores to make business worth Rs 35 crores. But, our industry wants every film to do that kind magic, which is almost impossible.

For instance, had I made Pizza and Soodhu Kavvum at a budget of 4 crores and 7 crores respectively, both projects would have turned out to be blunders. Impeccable planning and execution are the mantras for good returns.

When you do a film with a star, you aim at the mass audience. But in our case, we have a target audience and we invest accordingly. Neither do we make mass films nor art films. We aim at making cult movies and the educated youths are our major target audience. I cannot be complaining about a class of audience not watching my films, when my target is a different class of audience. If my film still manages to impress a bigger audience, it’s God’s doing.


Does the company fear the failure of their project not working out at the box-office?

I do not fear failures, but it’s a lot of pressure. I understand that 100% success rate is extremely difficult. There will be ups and downs. If I hadn’t been ready to accept the results, I wouldn’t have sustained for so long.

Every film is a lesson. To exactly ascertain the pulse of every audience is next to impossible and we cannot force anyone to like our films. Everyone has their own perspective and there’s nothing we can do about it but to respect their views.

Starting from Attakathi, Pizza, Soodhu Kavvum to Villa, I loved all those films and that is my only parameter when it comes to producing.


How does the company react when a film doesn't come out or perform as expected?

To me cinema is a business, just like all my other ventures. When we close our accounts at the end of the year, our returns must be more than the investments we made during the whole year. That’s how we look at it.

The first lesson one must learn to be in this industry is to be practical and not take the results too personally. There’s no point in giving up when you face failures. We have to be a sport and accept it as a new lesson learnt.

But our industry believes that the image of a maker lies on the box office results. I don’t think so. Every producer invests on a project believing it will make it huge. But the result is never in our hands.  


How important is a team's previous track record and experience, when you decide to associate with that particular team?

I do not see their past records. What I’ll look into is the value of the project in hand and the efficiency of the team. No two projects are same and each one has to be treated differently.


What change would you like to bring about or see in the industry?

My only wish is that all producers and distributors must be able to make profits.


Tags : CV Kumar


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