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Arun Varma: Garudan is based on a real-life rape case

Garudan, starring Suresh Gopi and Biju Menon, was helmed by Arun Varma with screenplay by Midhun Manuel Thomas

Arun Varma: Garudan is based on a real-life rape case
Arun Varma on Garudan

Last Updated: 06.13 PM, Nov 15, 2023


The Suresh Gopi and Biju Menon-starrer Garudan, which was released in theatres on November 3, opened to positive responses, with viewers appreciating the film’s screenplay and performances. Directed by debutant Arun Varma, the film revolves around the murder of a college girl. Her case is being investigated by Suresh Gopi’s character, Haris Madhav. The film’s screenplay, written by Midhun Manuel Thomas, has been receiving huge acclaim; the thriller has managed to captivate audiences. In a recent interview, Arun revealed the inspiration behind the character of the college girl, Theresa Philip.

Detail from the poster of Garudan, starring Suresh Gopi and Biju Menon
Detail from the poster of Garudan, starring Suresh Gopi and Biju Menon

Arun Varma: Theresa Philip’s character is based on a real-life assault case

In an interview with Saina South Plus, Arun was asked if he had thought about the consequences of mentioning certain facts and if the makers feared certain elements would mislead the public. Arun said, “The articles and facts already exist in the data, whether I take it for my reference or not. I was not keen on determining what's good or bad, as that is very subjective, and we all have our own judgments. Nor have we sent any message or deliberately tried influencing the public through the film’s narrative.”

He continued, “In fact, we have referenced a few real-life incidents for the plot. The character Theresa Philip is based on the real-life case of Aruna Shanbaug, who was raped by a ward boy and was later in a coma for over 36 years. This case served as a thread to the story initially. The culprit behind the case is still alive and has been released after serving his punishment in prison, hence altogether serving as the main theme of our story.”


Garudan's plot, cast and crew

Garudan is the story of Harish Madhav (Suresh Gopi), who is remorseful of an investigation from the past in which he believes he falsely charged Nishant (Biju Menon), a professor who has now come out of jail after serving his sentence. The legal tussle between the cop and the professor, along with the cop’s efforts to solve a complex case that has stumped many, makes it a mystery worth delving into.

Apart from Suresh Gopi and Biju Menon, the film also stars Siddique, Jagadish, Thalaivasal Vijay, Dileesh Pothan, Abhirami, Divya Pillai, Arjun Nandhakumar, Nishanth Sagar and Major Ravi. 

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