COLUMN: LOCATION DIARY
Actor Namitha Pramod talks about her experiences in the films, 'Puthiya Theerangal', 'Role Models', 'Amar Akbar Anthony' and 'Pullipulikalum Aattinkuttiyum'
By Shevlin Sebastian
On the beach at Alleppey, Namitha Pramod noticed a dog moving around, following her everywhere. This was during the shoot of 'Puthiya Theerangal' (2012). She was playing a young girl called Thamara, who lives by the seashore. Soon, a shot was set up. Namitha was supposed to run along with comedian Dharmajan Bolgatty.
But as soon as they started running, the dog started chasing them. When director Sathyan Anthikad saw this, he immediately shouted, “Cut.” But when Dharmajan saw that the dog was still chasing them, he shouted, “Namitha, keep running.”
And so the pair carried on running, to avoid the dog. But the over-excited animal refused to stop. He also continued to run. “After a while, I was getting breathless and a bit scared,” says Namitha. “But Dharmajan kept urging me on.” And just when Namitha was about to collapse, the dog stopped suddenly. He had run out of breath and was panting heavily.
Soon, the crew members ran up and chased the dog away. “I have never run so much and so far,” says Namitha. “It's an experience I will never forget.” The duo returned to the set, cooled down, drank some water and resumed shooting.
There was more action on the sets of the upcoming 'Role Models'. Namitha plays an adventure sports trainer named Shreya. In one song sequence, on a beach in Goa, Namitha was driving a jet ski with hero Fahadh Faasil sitting behind her. Suddenly, a very big wave arose and hit the jet ski.
“The next thing I knew the ski had toppled over and both of us fell into the water,” says Namitha. “For a moment, I was completely disoriented. I saw black all around me. Thankfully I did not go under water, since I was wearing a life jacket.”
Even Fahadh was in a state of shock. “Looking back I realised that I made a mistake in riding the jet ski,” says Namitha. “There is a particular way to cut through the waves, and I was not able to do it. It was an embarrassing moment.”
On the sets of 'Amar Akbar Anthony' (2015), at Mattancherry, actor Prithviraj experienced an embarrassing moment. As soon as Namita, who plays the heroine opposite him, met him, she said, “I am a great fan of yours. I loved watching your movies from the time I was in Class 1.”
The moment Namitha said that, Prithviraj had a shocked look on his face. Then he said, “Okay, fine, but don't tell this to anybody.”
Then he told Namitha he was reminded of a similar experience, when he acted in the movie, 'Raavanan' (2010), with Aishwarya Rai and Vikram. As soon as he met Aishwarya he told her that he had been a great fan of hers since his teenage years. Aishwarya looked stunned.
Then Prithviraj told Namitha, “Now I understand why Aishwarya looked shocked. Because I am going through the same experience. Thank you Namitha.” And they both laughed.
On the sets of Lal Jose's 'Pullipulikalum Aattinkuttiyum' (2013), it was the turn of Namitha to feel embarrassed. “All my sequences and the songs opposite Kunchacko Boban ended up being shot in heavy rainfall,” says Namitha. Then in 'Vikramadithya' (2014), again by Lal Jose, it was raining endlessly. Again, most of the songs and the scenes had to be shot in the rain.
Lal Jose said, “Namitha, every time you come to my location it is raining.” In the end, the crew members gave her the name of 'Mayil' (Malayalam for peacock), the bird which always dances in the rain.
(Published in the New Indian Express, Kochi, Kozhikode and Thiruvananthapuram)