Oscar winner Resul Pookutty, who has worked on the sound of upcoming film ‘Nanak Shah Fakir’, says the biopic on Guru Nanak is a moving story about a master and the disciple who followed him.
Pookutty says he likes the message that the film conveys, adding that religion is just one aspect of the story, which depicts a tumultuous time in Indian history.
“I don’t belong to the Sikh community, but I believe in the teachings of Guru Nanak. This movie is about a family and a disciple, Bhai Mardana, who travelled with his master around the country on a soul-searching trip, seeking answers about life,” Pookutty told PTI.
The sound designer said he took Rs 1 as remuneration to work on the movie, which has been produced by Harinder Singh Sikka, and will be released on April 17.
Uttam Singh has given the music of the film, while Tuomas Kantelinen worked on the score under the guidance of Oscar-winner AR Rahman. Pt Jasraj and Bhai Nirmal Singh have recited the shabads in the movie.
Sikka said he decided to make a movie on Guru Nanak despite not knowing anything about film-making because films reach a lot of people.
“The movie is about the message of Guru Nanak and it is told through the eyes of Mardana. I have overcome so many problems while making the movie. An attempt like this has been made for the first time in more than 500 years and it talks about the teachings of Guru Nanak. Nobody reads books today; film is the best medium to spread his message,” Sikka said.
Some Sikh groups have objected to the depiction of Guru Nanak in physical form, but the producer said he has used animation to portray him in the film.
“I am ready to show my film to anyone who has doubts, but don’t make loud statements without watching it. There are calendars of Guru Nanak everywhere and there are films too. We have used animation to depict the Guru. I have treaded very cautiously,” he added.
Controversy over directorial credit
In another controversy, Sartaj Singh Pannu, who was part of the movie, has moved the high court, saying that he was being denied directorial credit by the producer, a claim denied by Sikka.
“AK Bir had joined the film as the director and DoP (director of photography) of the movie, but he was made to leave the project midway by some people. Pannu was hired later. I did not deny him credit, but he is not the only director of the movie. I offered Pannu joint credit, but he did not agree even to that. The court will decide it now,” Sikka said.
Pookutty, who was given the co-producer’s credit in the movie, decided to step down from the post after his name was dragged into the controversy.
“My commitment to the film remains the same, but I am not holding any official position because I need to step away from this unnecessary controversy. The co-producer’s post was offered to me as a kind gesture.
My work in the film is selfless as I truly believe in the teachings of Guru Nanak,” he said.
The sound designer said he never met Pannu and to see his name being dragged into the fight by him was painful.