It seems Malayalam directors are increasingly preferring to premiere their movies at reputed international film festivals rather than showcasing them at home first.
The latest to join the bandwagon is director Sajin Babu, whose latest, Biriyaani, will be premiered at the Asiatica Film Festival in Rome. The festival, into its 20th year, is scheduled from October 3 to 9. Biriyaani will be the opening film of the festival.
Sajin thus follows Sanal Kumar Sadidharan, Lijo Jose Pellissery and Geethu Mohandas, whose movies were screened in international film festivals recently.
Sanal's Chola was screened at the Venice Film Festival, while Lijo'sJallikkattu and Geetu's Moothon were premiered at the Toranto Film Festival.
Biriyaani is Sajin's third movie. His debut Asthamayam Vare, Unto the Dusk, had won audience prize at the International Film Festival of Kerala. It was premiered at Mumbai International Film Festival in 2014 in India Gold category and Bengaluru International Film Festival.
His second movie - Ayal Sasi - also won critical acclaim.
Biriyaani has Kani Kusurthi in the lead. She plays the role of Khadeeja. "The movie delves into a woman’s state of mind and the circumstances that drives her to rebel against to rebel against society and religion,” said Sajin.
Anil Nedumangad, J Shailaja, Surjith, Jayachandran and Shyam Reji too play important roles in the movie.
Filmmaker Sanal Kumar Sasidharan and playback singer Pushavathy and Kani’s father, Maitreyan too are part of the cast.
Shot in various regions spread across Kerala and Tamil Nadu, the movie captures the essence of life from a conservative, religious and rural background.
Karthik Muthukumar and Harishankar, son of the late writer-director Lohitadas have helmed the cinematography, while Appu Bhattathiri is in charge of editing. The music is by Leo Tom. Biriyaani is produced by Abdul Razak under the banner of UAN Film House.