TV Times

A Soliloquy on ‘Asani Warsha’
By Susitha R. Fernando
Producer Soma Edirisinghe has produced another film to her credit. The director Vasantha Obeysekera’s brainchild, Asani Warsha (Wrath and Rain).
Vasantha, who believes that a director should create for his own self expression and wanted to reveal his concept on illegitimacy through this new film.

This film indicates the relationship between a father and his illegitimate son. The son seeks recognition while the father rejects him as he has done so since his conception. This type of relationship is ambivalent and Vasantha says that 60% of our society’s children can be considered as illegitimate offspring of the wealthy upper class.

Pradeep a by-product of such an upper class society is a failure from the word go. Whatever or which ever he tries to do comes a cropper. Thus the film that takes on a lone journey of wrath hope of the hopeless ends when the hopeless loses hope.

This film is not a message on social evils or morality. It is a simple story of an unfortunate who had the misfortune to be born on the wrong side of the blanket.

His birth itself is the omen of his life. As such there is not a question of justice or, it is a question of the feelings and expressions of bitterness and loneliness experienced due to the action of the very person that society has placed on a pedestal, A father. The action of a moment’s pleasure of one human being and the displeasure and disharmony experienced by another who is indebted to renegade for his very life, a jealousy static life that ends in a static stance.

According to the director, the background for “Asani Varsha” is a true incident that was reported in a local newspaper. “The actual incident like in the film is the son who was searching for his father for a long time going to meet him on a one Vesak day. And the reaction he received there really touched me and disturbed me very much. Following on the newspaper article and police reports I collected the full story which was a real tragedy”. Thus I started to write the script.

Speaking on the producer Mr. Obeysekera said by the time I was writing the script I was invited by Soma Edirisinghe to do a film. Actually I was freed from financial constraints but I still did not want to handle the money and even the film was done below the estimated budget.

The cast
Jagath Chamil, Kamal Addaraarachchi, Meena Kumari, Sanath Gunathilaka, Veena Jayakody, Mahendra Perera, Semini Iddmalgoda and Janaki Wijeratne.

The crew
The director of photography –Jayantha Gunawardhana, editor – Ravindra Guruge, music director – Premasiri Khemadasa, art director – Lal Harindranath and make-up – Imal Shanaka Peiris.

The production executive-Nihal Sanjaya, the assistant director-Wimal Deshapriya, story, script and direction of Vasantha Obeysekere, producer-Soma Edirisinghe of EAP Films

Director’s role
Graduating from the University of Peradeniya in 1962, Vasantha Obeysekere started his career as a journalist serving on the Editorial Staff of the Associated Newspapers of Ceylon Limited (1964 1970). There in addition to editorial responsibilities he wrote short stories as well. Later he took up teaching for sometime.

However his prime interest was in filmmaking, and was associated as a co-screenplay writer and assistant director of the film “Sath Samudura” (Seven seas), which was Sri Lanka’s official entry for the Moscow International Film Festival in 1967. In 1971 he obtained a Certificate in Cinematography from Conserva-tories Independent Du Cinema Francais Paris. In 1970, he started his career as a film director with the film “Wesgaththo” (Masked Men) and since then he has become an emblematic and outstanding filmmaker in Sri Lanka.

The rest of his directions some of which were the landmark in Sri Lankan cinema are Palangetiyo (Grasshoppers / 1979), Dadayama (The Hunt / 1984), Kadapathaka Chayava (Reflections in a Mirror / 1989), Maruthaya (The Wind / 1995), Dorakada Marawa (Death at the Doorstep / 1998), Theertha Yatra (Journey / 1999) and Salelu Warama (2002).

Vasantha Obeysekera is also waiting for the release of “Sewvandi”(The Rose), which he directed to the maiden production of popular actress Sangeetha Weeraratne.

‘Sewvandhi’ also another script by Mr. Obeysekera revolves around a detective and his capacity for investigation. It depicts how he faces a mysterious coincident and handles it.

The film plays by Sangeetha Weeraratne, Ravindra Randeniya, Chandani Seneviratne and photographer turned singer Dayan Vitharana.

The latest of Mr. Obeysekera, “Aganthukaya” (The Stranger) is the first script selected by the JVP controlled National Film Corporation (NFC) to produce. Having selected as the best script to be awarded for the production scheme the shooting on the location will be started on May 5.

The film deals with the repercussion of politicising of society. The main roles are played by Saumya Liyanage, Chandani Seneviratne and Sanatha Gunathilake.


Copyright © 2001 Wijeya Newspapers Ltd. All rights reserved.