Recent successful films such as Pulimurugan, Devi(L), Premam and Majnu have one common connection: music composer Gopi Sunder. He is not only the most sought after musicians in the south but is also the fastest. He usually does four projects at a time, for instance he worked in 22 films in 2014 while the number was 18 in 2015.
Last week three of his films, Pulimurugan, Devi(L), Premam, were released to a positive response and songs and background music in these films were a big hit. “Every project I do have their own challenges, but in Pulimurgan besides challenges I also had to deal with a lot public pressure,” says Gopi.
“When I started composition for Pulimurugan, I shared the news on my Facebook page. The post drew a lot of attention, especially fans of Mohanlal from around the world commented on the post and demanded that I deliver a good music album. Living up to their expectations was the most challenging part of the Pulimurgan project,” he recalls.
While he generally takes 10 to 15 days to finish music for a film, Gopi took about 30 days and worked in two schedules for Pulimurugan. “Generally my clients come to me with a short notice due to different circumstances and I do my work faster. But, director Vysakh gave me time to work on this project.”
His music in Pulimurugan was well received by Mohanlal’s fans. He said even people who had been critical of his work in the past appreciated his music in this film. “That is one of the memorable things about working in Pulimurugan,” he said.
Gopi said the Pulimurugan team was initially scared because it is rare to see an out-and-out mass entertainer on this scale in Malayalam. “I hear there are no tickets available despite theatres increasing the number of shows for the film,” Gopi says with joy.
“Looking at the response, we realised that people had been waiting for such a ‘mass’ film and that it was a long overdue. These days the Malayalam film industry is more into making realistic movies,” he noted.
The computer-generated images of tigers are the best part of the film. But when Gopi started composing background music for the film, the CGI was at very early stages and the visuals were far from perfect. He had used his imagination and envisage tigers while composing background music for the scenes.
“The film gradually came into shape and the result is now there for everyone to see. I congratulate the VFX teams for the very good work ,” he added. “It was my honour to work in a film like Pulimugruam. The audience has liked my songs and that gives me a lot of job stratification. I’m happy.”
The Hyderabad-based Firefly Creative Studio was one of the VFX teams that worked in Pulimurugan. Previously the company had worked in big ticket films like Baahubali, Enthiran, Magadheera among others.
“It is a very proud film for technicians. I appreciate Vysakh for making use of the best talents and create such a good package,” he said. He also hopes that the success of Pulimurugan will inspire other Malayalam filmmakers to make more such big-budget commercial films in the future.
“The budget of Malayalam movies these days are very low and it takes a toll on our salaries. Realism in films is good, but it doesn’t increase our salaries. Commercial films like Pulimurugan does,” he added. He is currently working in two upcoming films in Malayalam and two movies in Telugu.