The writer PS Rafeeque on the Vinayakan-starrer – The New Indian Express


Express news service

Following his critically acclaimed debut film Kismath, director Shanavas K Bavakutty is set to release his second feature, Thottappan. The film, which revolves around a father-daughter bond, has Vinayakan, Roshan Mathew, and newcomer Priyamvada playing the main characters.

While Shanavas is currently in the midst of post-production work – the film is currently slated for an Eid release – PS Rafeeque, who scripted the film, tells Express how the script, based on Francis Noronha’s short story , was shaped. . Rafeeque also plays a character in the film.


Surprisingly, the writer of Amen reveals that he didn’t find the whole book exciting. But he found the story powerful and compelling enough to warrant a movie. Rafeeque believes Noronha has written much better stories. It’s a statement reminiscent of an old interview with filmmaker Anurag Kashyap, in which he said he tried to breathe new life into the Bengali novel Devdas by offering a different version, through Dev D. Rafeeque shares the same philosophy .

“Thottappan arrived while I was planning another project with Shanavas. When he and I discussed it, he told me about a different way of approaching the story, which I found very interesting, ”says Rafeeque, who, along with Shanavas, found a way to create a “Best case scenario” from the story. “Since Shanavas had a clear idea of ​​what he wanted from the material, it made it a lot easier for me. ”

Rafeeque and Shanavas only pursued the idea after making sure Noronha was okay with it. “We had discussed everything openly with him. There’s no denying the power of her story, and while we may not have been able to follow the story exactly as it is on screen, we have kept her soul intact, ”adds Rafeeque.

About his writing process, Rafeeque says that while he approaches each screenplay as if it were a literary work, he manages to make it more screenplay friendly. “My writing is much more descriptive, which is different from the narrative style of films made today. It’s all about visual storytelling in the cinema and you have to maintain good communication with the director to fully understand how to approach the elements of the story. From what point of view is the story told? Which character should be the priority? Things like that.”

Rafeeque, who is also an accomplished lyricist – he wrote songs for films like Angamaly Diaries and Amen – wrote a song in Thottappan. The process of writing the lyrics, he says, doesn’t happen during script development. “When I write the screenplay, I don’t think of anything else. The addition of other elements depends on the director. If he plans to include songs, then the songs are written later.

There have been a few instances in the past where I have thought about the need to add songs in some of the movies I have written. Rafeeque tells us that he is involved throughout the production process of all of his films. “I’m involved in dubbing, music, mixing… everything. I’m not someone who writes a script and leaves the rest to the director. “


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