The first-look poster of the film was recently released by Malayalam actor Shine Tom Chacko
Last Updated: 09.01 AM, Jul 26, 2022
Ajith Asok and Haripriya in a still from Kunja
When short filmmaker Ajith Asok worked on the peppy number, "Kunja, Ende Kili Evide", along with music director Sumesh Kumar, little did he expect that he would go on to make an entire short film around the song. The song, sung by Sathyanarayanan and Sumesh Kumar and with lyrics by Ciril John, Sumesh and Ajith, has been doing the rounds on the internet ever since the teaser of the film was released. The film, Kunja, is a tale of unrequited love through the actions of nature and the universe that binds it.
The first look of the short film was recently released by Malayalam actor Shine Tom Chacko. Taking to his social media page, the Beast actor wrote, "Very excited & happy to bring you the first look of this Romantic Musical Sensation, by an young & refreshing team of #KUNJA...Congrats to the entire crew..! Undoubtedly a talent to look out for in the future...! Heartwarming teaser to follow on 22nd of July...#Taleofkunja #Kunja #Malayalam #Musicalstory #Muzik247 (sic)."
"Yes, it all started with the song," begins Ajith Asok, the film's director, lead actor and editor. "There is a popular Malayalam saying called 'Kili Parannu Poyi' (bird flew away) and stories about Velambal bird (hornbill) waiting for its mate. Kunja is a word in Malayalam, which is fondly used to address people whom we find endearing. When the song turned out well, we wondered how to churn out a story around it and then the idea for the short film struck. Kunja is a love triangle about a love which remains untold and how the universe eventually connects them together," he says.
The short film has been filmed in and around Ooty by cinematographer Kamalesh and the portions were canned during the lockdown period. "It was extremely challenging shooting for a film with a limited budget, that too, during the pandemic. We had to take utmost precautions as far as the food, stay and shoot was concerned. We were very particular that the locations looked like that of Kerala to suit the film and cautiously scouted for locations in Ooty. It was an interesting and challenging experience.
Interestingly, Ajith Asok doubled up as the lead actor of the film as well. "I would shoot a portion and then run back to the monitor and check if everything was alright or we needed to improvise. There is a scene where I fall into the mud and my entire body is covered in it. Due to the windy weather condition in Ooty, it was extremely difficult shooting that scene and we had to constantly pour water to keep the mud wet." The star cast for the film includes Teja Venkatesh, Haripriya Hariharan, Daksha Shathivel, Pravin Sivadass and Praveen Sudhakar to name a few. The plot is narrated by Prabhin Sahasra and the film has been bankrolled by Praveen Kumar under the banner Baali Production.
Ajith Asok had earlier directed the short films, Kaara (which marked the debut of Sai Pallavi's sister Sai Pooja), Maatharam (which featured the world’s shortest woman, Jyoti Kisange Amge) and Oru MSV Rasigan. Kunja is the Coimbatore-based filmmaker's fourth project.