Shankar Mahadevan: Never thought my life’s story could be shown on screen
Composer-singer Shankar Mahadevan has various hit soundtracks to his credit, which have won his accolades over the years. But now, the musician has won a laurel outside the field of music. A documentary film on his life, titled Decoding Shankar, has won two awards at the Cannes World Film Festival. Directed by Deepti Pillay Sivan, the movie has won in the Best Indian Film and Best Biographical Film categories.
When we asked the composer if he saw this coming, Mahadevan said, “We did not think that the film would make such a massive impact on audiences and critics alike. I never thought that my life’s story could be captured in a book or on the screen in a film. I’ve never given myself so much importance by dwelling on my pursuits and accomplishments.”
When the director reached out to Mahadevan with the idea, he wasn’t sure how it would shape up. “When she narrated her idea and storyline, I was amused. But, when I thought about her idea, intention, belief and research on me, the project began to make a sense. As the film started taking shape, I knew this would be one of the greatest experiences of my life,” says Mahadevan.
While he had to play himself in the project, the musician is open to accepting more acting offers. “I’m used to being in front of the camera. Years of music videos, reality TV shows, and cameos have taught me that. I’ve acted in a Marathi film and played the lead in Katyar Kaljat Ghusali (2015), and I’m comfortable with acting,” says Mahadevan.
For Sivan, the project was special and it took her two-and-a-half years to complete the film. The film has won awards at nine festivals so far, but winning at Cannes World Film Festival is extra special. “It is every filmmaker’s dream to win an award at Cannes, Berlin or Oscars. This has encouraged me to work even harder now,” she says.
Apart from Mahadevan and his family members, the film also sees the likes of Amitabh Bachchan, Sachin Tendulkar, Javed Akhtar, Gulzar, Farhan Akhtar, Aamir Khan, Zakir Hussain and Louis Banks speak about their association with him over the years. “The number of celebrities who have spoken in the film is humbling. I’m grateful to each of them,” Mahadevan signs off.