The Fiesty Demon and The Hearty Laugh!
‘Haha haha haha..oho oho oho..That’s how Gatothkach will laugh when he sees the laddus, payasam, jaliebis and more as he passes the royal kitchens in Dwaraka’. Director KV Reddy was talking to his team on his vison for a scene that would go on to become a great cinematic moment.
In 1956-57, KV Reddy and his team at Vijaya Vauhini studios in Madras had begun shooting for Mayabazar. A bilingual epic fantasy film based on folk tale ‘Sasirekha Parinayam’ which in turn was based on Mahabharatha.
Central to the film plot is the character of Gatothkach, the son of Bhima and Hidimbi. The feisty, friendly demon with great magical powers which he uses to fool the Kauravas with the help of Lord Krishna played by NTR.
The team wanted to create awe inspiring visuals of Gatothkach having a feast with some rip roaring background music and song in the background.
Ghantasala, the music director finally got the inspiration from this Charles Penrose’s epic 1922 hit ‘The Laughing Policeman'. The cinematographer Marcus Bartley and his team took 4 days to shoot the song in Bangalore using stop-motion film making technique in which the objects were moved in small increments between every photographed frame.
SV Ranga Rao and his supreme gusto did the rest.
On this Diwali, may you and your family laugh heartily and feast to you fullest desire with great gusto! A bit like Gatothkach!
The wiki on Mayabazar is a treasure trove of many more fascinating back stories on Mayabazar.
This wordpress blog by Sriram MV is great reading as well
And enjoy the Telugu Version of my favourite song in cinema:
..and this one in Tamil.