Kenja Chethan Kumar on ‘Chow Chow Bath’: It is a hyperlink film


stills from the movie

Pictures from the movie Photo Credit: Special Arrangement

Cinema comes in all sizes, formats and genres. The same is the case for Kannada cinema, which has expanded in new and exciting ways in the last decade. And while compilations may be a thing of the past, what about hyperlinked movies? Kenja Chetan Kumar has defined his latest film, chow chow bath, As a hyperlinked movie.

Chetan says that anthologies are a collection of unrelated stories put together in the form of a collection of films. “In a hyperlink, you have parallel tracks running on the screen, which converge as the film progresses,” says Chetan during the screening of his film at the Bengaluru International Film Festival (BIFFes 2024). “This format has not been explored in Kannada cinema and we are thrilled to see the audience response.”

Kenja Chetan Kumar

Kenja Chetan Kumar Photo Credit: Special Arrangement

chow chow bathSeveral actors including Aruna Balraj, Sagar Gowda, Sushmita Bhat, Dhanush S Baikampadi and Sankalp Sharma were nominated in the Kannada Cinema Competition category. “We are thrilled to be able to screen the film at this festival. We saw a huge footfall and hope to see the same when the film releases commercially on March 15.”

Chetan says that the title of the film is inspired by the famous cuisine of Karnataka. pure bath And saffron bath, “They are opposite in taste and texture and yet they are served in the same plate because people like it that way. The title reflects that aspect of our film. Convergence of three parallel tracks into one frame. It is also a romantic comedy. There are six main characters and you feel like their stories are independent from each other, until you reach the pre-climax.

The film is written, directed and edited by Chetan, who hails from a place called Kenja in Mangaluru, which he also uses as a prefix to his name. He comes from agricultural background. “Although I never met my grandfather Kemathur Dodanna Shetty, as he passed away before I was born. I heard interesting stories of his association with theater in our village. He was a playwright, actor, singer and a director who wrote plays in Tulu and one of his plays is believed to have been staged 6,666 times in and around Mangaluru. It was this history that initially attracted me to theatre, but I also wanted to move towards cinema.”

Chetan says that he was not able to train himself in professional film production courses and was interested in working as a film editor. “While researching the topic of film editors and directors, I came to know that Rajkumar Hirani is an editor turned director. I started reading more about him, about his work, about his films and he became my hero and inspiration.”

Chetan decided that he would also work as a film editor, equip himself with the necessary skills and then direct a film. “Later I came to know that Subhash Ghai and Sirish Kunder were also film editors turned directors, and I knew that if I could get a job as a film editor anywhere, I too could fulfill my dream. That's when I started working with the late Gopi Prabhu, who became my mentor and guide. After which, I started working with Asianet Suvarna, TV9 Kannada, Star India Pvt. Ltd.

After working for seven years as a film and TV editor, Chetan debuted as a director. Prema Gima let go in 2016, which was followed by Devaru bekagiddare. chow chow bathWith music by Hemanth Jois and cinematography by Rudramuni Belagere, is produced by Horizon Movies and will release on March 15.

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