EXCLUSIVE: ‘Marivillin Gopurangal’ is a happy film and appeals equally to adults and children, says director Arun Bose

Arun Bose gets candid about his latest outing, the storyline, the casting, working with music director Vidyasagar, and a lot more.

ByArjun Ramachandran

Published May 15, 2024 | 3:00 PMUpdatedMay 15, 2024 | 4:26 PM

Candid chat with Marivillin Gopurangal director Arun Bose

Director Arun Bose debuted in the Malayalam industry in 2021 with Luca, which won the audience’s attention for its intense investigative drama-cum-love story.

His second directorial, Mindiyum Paranjum — featuring Unni Mukundan and Aparna Balamurali, is yet to be released.

However, his third venture — Marivillin Gopurangal, a feel-good entertainer featuring Indrajith Sukumaran, Shruti Ramachandran, Vincy Aloshious, and Sarjano Khalid — is already out and has garnered a positive response from audiences and critics alike.

In an interview with South First, Arun Bose gets candid about Marivillin Gopurangal, the storyline, the casting, working with music director Vidyasagar, and a lot more.

Excerpts from the interview with the writer-director-editor:

Q. How did you pick the storyline for Marivillin Gopurangal — a couple who is not ready to have children and an unmarried couple who will soon become parents?

With Indrajith and Shruti Ramachandran

With Indrajith Sukumaran and Shruti Ramachandran. (Supplied)

A. The concept of the film revolves around two brothers living in Kochi and their partners. I wanted a sitcom format for the flick, similar to the American TV series “Friends“.

I wanted to convey some information and a message to the viewers through the layers of the story.

The first couple in Marivillin Gopurangal struggles. Though the husband and wife are sweet and friendly, they don’t enjoy their struggles. The movie will be related more to married couples.

Whereas the second couple, though unmarried, are mentally prepared to take what life throws at them. They believe that everything is a natural process and enjoy their lives.

When I shared this idea with actor Siju Wilson, he connected me to writer Pramod Mohan. The script and dialogues are written by Pramod.

We decided to do this story as it is highly relevant and relatable to everyone in our age group, particularly couples living in a city like Kochi. A majority of couples living in urban areas feel they can bear children after achieving financial stability.

Marivillin Gopurangal review: Arun Bose delivers an entertainer that also gives audience food for thought

Q. Your debut movie Luca was an intense love story about an artist. However, in Marivillin Gopurangal, you took a different route by giving humour more importance. Could you explain?

A. I am a fan of romantic dramas like Before Sunset, Before Midnight, Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, and Blue Valentine. I like the couple equation and relationship shown in these films. This theme never fades and is always relevant.

In Luca, I narrated about two couples through an investigative thriller. In Marivillin Gopurangal, we spoke about two couples with an ample dose of comedy.

I wanted to explore couple relationships in different genres and hence these films happened.

Q. Marivillin Gopurangal deals with a progressive subject. It speaks about couples from two different angles. How did you manage to strike a balance here?

A. In Marivillin Gopurangal, we did not say what was right and what was wrong. We never had that intention.

Both couples think in different ways. Privacy and individual space have become priorities for couples nowadays. When compared to joint families, the couples in micro families are prioritising these aspects.

Shinto and Sherin (played by Indrajith Sukumaran and Shruti Ramachandran) think they are mature but they are not.

The unmarried couple (played by Sarjano Khalid and Vincy Aloshious) is more mature and enjoys life to the fullest.

Arun Bose with Vidyasagar

Arun Bose with music director Vidyasagar. (Supplied)

Q. How was working with music director Vidyasagar?

A. It was interesting working with Vidya ji. He finalised the tunes in just three days.

His working style is different. Vidya ji is open to our suggestions.

We sat with Vidya Sagar ji while he composed the music. We heard the tunes and shared our opinions. He redid the tunes when we were not satisfied.

Even lyricist Vinayak Sasikumar penned the songs.

Q. Being a painter, how do you visualise the scenes?

A. We can approach a movie either realistically or cinematically. While in paintings, we take a realistic or surreal approach.

My second directorial, Mindiyum Paranjum, is a realistic film. Luca and Marivillin Gopurangal are more cinematic.

As a director, my motive is to give a cinematic approach to my movies. When I make a film, I visualise scenes while keeping in mind the target audience.

But, otherwise, I think realistically and like realistic films.

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Q. How did you lock the final casting of the movie? What was the response from the producers?

A. While writing the script, we thought of many actors. But as the script progressed, we decided on the present cast and I believe, we made a perfect choice.

The producers were happy with the output.

Q. How do you work on different genres?

A. As a director, I like doing challenging films and different genres. I watch cartoons and comedies. They excite me a lot.

I like to do fantasy action films like Walt Disney.

I also attend the film festivals regularly.

With Master Vashisht

Arun Bose with Master Vashisht. (Supplied)

Q. How was it working with the star cast in Marivillin Gopurangal?

A. I had a good rapport with the main cast.

In cinema, the cast and crew must share a healthy relationship to ensure a better outcome.

Indrajith, Shruti, Vincy, and Sarjano are good actors and well-behaved. I could extract the best from them.

Q. Why did you decide on taking “Marivillin Gopurangal“, a popular line from the song in the superhit movie Summer in Bethlehem, as the title for your directorial?

A. We wanted the title to indicate happiness. We felt the line from the song in the film Summer in Bethlehem would be apt for the tile.

Marivillin Gopurangal means “Rainbow houses” and a rainbow indicates happiness.

The story is set against the backdrop of a city. Most people live in apartments in Kochi. For any urban dweller, a rainbow brings happiness.

Secondly, the characters in the movie are like different colours of a rainbow.

Interestingly, our film equally appeals to adults and children.

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Q. Tell us about your favourite scene from the film.

A. There’s a scene in the film with Bindu Panicker, Shruti Ramachandran, and Vincy Aloshious, where Bindu and Vincy improvised it on the spot and took us by surprise.

Also, Ro Ro’s VFX work and Joy’s songs came out well.

With Asif Ali

Arun Bose with Asif Ali. (Supplied)

Q. How do take see criticism?

A. Everyone has the freedom of expression and it is up to an individual how we take other’s opinions. As an artist, I take the maturely.

Constructive criticism and personal attacks are different. I accept constructive criticism, for it helps me improve as an artist and expand my horizons.

But I don’t entertain personal attacks under the garb of criticism.

In this age of citizen journalism, the public is confusing a person’s opinion as news, which shouldn’t be the case.

We also have social media influencers. But the job comes with a social responsibility and sensibilities. People must understand what is propaganda and what is not.

Q. What is Mindiyum Paaranjum about?

A. Mindiyum Paaranjum draws its inspiration from a short story. The film will be released soon.

Q. What are your future projects?

A. For now, I signed a Hindi film — an action drama. But I’m not sure if it takes off first or my next Malayalam movie.

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