BAFTA award-winning sound designer Resul Pookutty is to file a case against multiplexes in India after experiencing diminished sound quality in Rajnikanth’s latest blockbuster “Robot” (Enthiran in Hindi). What started out as a glamorous affair at a screening of “Robot” that was attended by icons such as Amitabh Bachchan, Aamir Khan and the stars of the film Rajnikanth and Aishwarya Rai Bachchan, ended in frustration for Resul Pookutty, after finding out that three of the speakers in the theatre were not working. He was keen to stop the screening from taking place, but was convinced otherwise by actor Aamir Khan, who felt that it would not be appropriate to call off the screening in the presence of top celebrities. In the last 40 or so minutes of the film, Resul says “the sound collapsed completely”, and he said he felt “humiliated”. The talented and clearly passionate sound expert says that since becoming well-known (after the success of Slumdog Millionaire), he feels that he now has a voice to represent the many technicians involved in Indian cinema.
He claims that whilst screens in South India have upgraded their sound systems, those in the North use inferior technology. Resul is filing what is known as an RTI – right to information – to find out under which grounds multiplexes are awarded licenses to screen movies. His frustration was palpable as he Tweeted after the screening: “I feel mutilated…if this is the kind of apathy towards our work shown at a high profile screening, what would the common man be getting…how would Hussain [an artist] feel if you throw in on hs paintin at an exhibition,thts what I felt…my work bn ripped apart!”. Let’s hope the RTI provides vital information to help improve the quality for all cinema-goers in the future!