As there are some sections in the film which happen in the pre-independence era, we had to take extra care for the costumes and art direction. There was one song which was supposed to happen inside the sets. That song comes right in the beginning of the film. It was a set of dream shop.
How would a dream shop look like? What if we were to go to a shop to buy some dream and dream them that night? Sounds bizarre? Yaa… that was the idea! What kind of dreams do we dream these days? Dreams of money, power? Are they scary dreams? How many times do we see a happy dream these days? Why are our dreams so disturbed? Is it the time we are living in? Is it the surroundings we live in?
A friend of mine from Cologne Film School in Germany, Richard had done a short film where a girl goes to buy dreams. I was very inspired from that idea. It was way back in 2006 when I had seen this film in Richard’s house in Cologne. When I started writing the script for Shikari, I was looking for an opening scene for Shikari which would set the proper mood to the film and would also symbolically speak about the subject of the film. In the film, Shikari, the lead actor is hunting a dream. He is unsure of his path in the journey called life. He is surely walking in some path and he is tired. But his goals are not yet set. The film starts at this juncture. So the protagonist of the film enters this dream shop right in the opening of the film. I thought the weirdness of dream shop can be handled more subtly and more abstractly through a song. When I approached Jayanth sir (One of the leading Kannada lyricist) he loved the idea and started thinking over the right words to suit the situation. On the other side, we started to work on the set idea for the song. Thus the work on dream shop started. I hope the dream shop song will give you some ideas and make you think about the paths we can take and we should take.
Now, we wanted a sales man in the dream shop. Though this is a small role in the film, it was one of the key roles as this character re-appears when the protagonist starts on his new journey. This character was imagined to be the mediator between the reality and abstractness! I wanted to cast a known face, a leading actor from Kannada to this role. At this juncture Aditya’s name came up in the production office. Aditya is one of the promising young actors in the Kannada Film Industry who has shown solid potential in the recent years. When we approached him, he willingly accepted to be a part of our project. Interestingly, by working in Shikari, he became the only lead actor who has worked with two very important actors from the Malyalam Film Industry, Mohan Lal and Mammootty!
Dinesh Mangalore started working on the set of dream shop. We decided to put up a set in one of the studios in Bangalore. There were very few days left for the shooting date. So the production office was like a house on fire. Everyone running around for various permissions, costumes, locations, set work, production preparation etc. I was a worried man! It was the first time I was handling such a mammoth production. A big budget film with mega star Mammootty him self! It was like those days before final examination in school. But I was happy within. Shikari, my dream of two years was now going on floor!