One week to susu shoot.
It started as a random idea in early 2000s as one of the potential movies that could cherish my dream of making a movie. Passenger was one among them then.Interestingly both were inspired from different traits of a close friend and my cubicle mate in office then,sudheendran.The hook in susu was some unique peculiarities in sudhi and it seemed a totally unexplored area in movies.
Initially susu was conceived as a “local” romantic comedy between a rather peculiar software engineer and a diametrically opposite music teacher mostly happening in a train (ala passenger).I tried to pitch the story to couple of young actors and Directors(dream was to be a writer then:)).Somehow nothing materialised.
Passenger was hooking people more easily as in idea.All the years passenger took to make and during the desperations in btwn susu used to popin.Sudhi was also coping up with challenges in job, life etc etc. I started interacting with some of his “special” doctors.Some peculiar weekly groups he visited looked super exiting in a movie. I got married in between and again Sudhi’s peculiar condition to pennu kanal was that he would see only one girl and that would be his wife:)
It happened exactly and he got married.He was looking for a change in job. We attended many job interviews together during this time. Me looking for a break from my failed movie attempts, him for an actual change in job.The software engineer,music teacher,the train n the genre kept changing their premises to suit the changes in the story.
Sudhi found another job finally decided to relocate to banglore. Probably a tough call away from home but that was life.
Passenger happened. Opportunity for another movie came with its success. Varsham,arjunan sakshi and susu were the best probables.To my complete dismay a highly appreciated international film released then and it dealt the same subject although both were different movies. The fire to make it immediately vanished with it and arjunan sakshi happened.
I met sudhi one of those days in banglore.He was trying hard to cope up with banglore and his new life. The story was extended to banglore and it took a new shape from there.Many friends tried to collaborate to give it new dimensions. The project was announced.It was about to be made then.But what stopped us then was the strong feeling that something was wrong. The script needed more depth, it needed a lot of preparation time for actors to play the parts given its complexities…It was a difficult movie to be made for its cost,commerce and everything. That gut feeling always has proved right for me. For sure it was a movie to be made but only with complete confidence. Susu was again pushed.
The wait continued. Molly aunty, punyalan and varsham happened. The success of varsham made me think of susu again.There was a space for susu.
I went to banglore and met sudheendran again. He was a completely confident, changed n purified man when he came to pick me in his new car, talking to his punjabi neighbour,having his game of evening badminton,his weekend hangout partners,his family vacation plans, his same love for his village and ulsavamas but from a different angle..
SuSu was complete that evening.It took 15 years and 15 years of a person’s life virtually and probably it was all worth it.
Now it needed an actor who had time and potential to play him. Jaysurya was an obvious choice. Jayan himself told he won’t work for 45 days to prepare for sudhi.Even difficult decision was to produce it given its budget,effort and risk involved.Jayan stood as a piller of support and we are producing it together after punyalan.
Creating music for susu was tricky. It needed songs which suited the story at the same time popular. Bijibal and santhosh varma took up the challenge and it took us 3 months to create them:)
As I write this I get a detailed message from sudhi on how to improve the climax a bit more..We offered him credits and remuneration for susu. He refused both claiming he’s not a writer despite having contributed to almost all unique situations for susu.We insisted on both as it would be very unfair from our part and finally he obliged.
A day later I receive a message from him saying he donated the entire amount to a fund raising program he was part of all these years which was lacking funds and which could support many many more susus.
I smiled reading it. This was what susu was all about…
Humility, humanity peace and happiness!