Auto-rickshaw driver turned writer M Chandrakumar, on whose book "Lock Up" the forthcoming Tamil thriller Visaranai is based, is eager to know how the general public will react to the film that is inspired from events from his life.
The film, which had its world premiere at Venice International
Film Festival last year, chronicles the harrowing experience of
Chandrakumar in a prison.
"The international audiences were moved by the film. I was
equally moved by their reaction. However, I'm more interested to
know how audiences here will react when the film releases this week
in cinemas," Chandrakumar, who is also known as Auto Chandran, told
Last year, the film was screened at Mumbai International Film
Festival, leaving audiences in awe.
"The events have been recreated very sensitively. So much so
that, it will trigger dialogue and discourse on basic human
rights," he said.
Back in 1983, in Guntur, Chandran along with his three friends
was detained by police and was mercilessly beaten black and blue
for 13 days for a crime he never committed.
Decades later, at the behest of his close friend, he penned down
the agony and pain he suffered in the hands of the police as Tamil
novel "Lock Up".
"I was in my 20s when the incident happened. I'd fled from my
house in Coimbatore, and before doing several odd jobs, I finally
landed in Guntur where my fate changed forever. We were booked on a
case of doubt," he said.
When National Award winning film-maker Vetrimaaran read the
novel, he decided to make it a film.
"The film was shot at the same place where we were held captive.
It was a 10X10 ft room without any source of air and light,"
recalled Chandran, who said Vetrimaaran had done full justice to
The film, which is jointly produced by actor Dhanush and
Vetrimaaran, features Dinesh, Murugadoss, Samuthirakani, Kishore,
Anandi and Ajay Ghosh.
Chandran hasn't met the three others who were locked up with him
since they were released. He doesn't even know if they're
"We parted ways fearing we may be arrested again. I hope when
the film releases, they watch it and know it's our story. I wish I
could meet them again," he said.
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