Filming of Flush by the Debutant Female Filmmaker Aisha Sultana to begin by the end of November 2020
For the first time in the history of Lakshadweep, a woman director from the Island becomes an independent director in Malayalam cinema. Aisha Sultana, a young filmmaker who has worked with many directors including renowned director Lal Jose, is writing and directing her own film Flush.
Lal Jose formally released the title of the film named ‘Flash’ through his Facebook page. Her last assignment as Assistant Director was the super hit Malayalam movie ‘Kettiyolaanu Ente Malakhayaanu.’ The editor and music director of that film, Noufal Abdullah and William respectively are taking part in Flash as well. Vishnu Panicker is handling the DoP, while the debutant Anandu Sunil is the Art Director. Yassar from the director’s hometown of Lakshadeep is the Production Controller and PR Sumeran is taking care of the PRO activities. Although the title look of Flash seem to be like that of the sea, the female figure which is hidden in it has already been earned much appreciation.
“One more person who came as my Assistant Director is now doing independent film making. This time, it is a girl, Aisha Sultana from Lashadweep. I am happy to share the poster of her movie, Flash,”said Lal Jose.
“Although, women seem to be as turbulent as the sea, most of the women I know are people who keep calm like the depths of the mind. Congratulations to the artist who found a sea in female physique,” Lal Jose added.
The Lakshadweep Administration has extended all sorts of cooperation to this movie, directed by the daughter of that soil. The filming of Flash will begin in November end strictly adhering to all the guidelines of COVID-19. Aisha, who has worked as a Assistant Director for many years in Malayalam cinema, where there are very few women directors, has created controversy on social media after revealing her views.
The latest issue that had stirred up the hornet’s nest was by joining hands with the female costume designer Stephy Xavier when she took a stand against actor turned film director, Geetu Mohandas. In fact, Stephy Xavier is handling the costume in Aisha Sultana’s new film as well. This is the continuation of the stand taken by Aisha Sultana in the previous controversy. It is not a hot topic in Malayalam cinema that the arrival of Aisha Sultana, with a bunch of debut actors is not to the Women in Cinema Collective (WCC). Stephy was initially assigned by Geetu Mohandas for her film project and apparently, she got dropped from the project for the best reason known to Geetu. Although, the selection and dropping of Stephy was not revealed by Geetu Mohandas and when Sultana broke the news, it became controversial. When controversies like this happen, the names of the involved parties would not appear in the public domain.
When Aisha Sultana showed her gall to reveal the name of the victim, apparently, she hit the headlines of the dailies. When a fellow female artist was unceremoniously been sent off the assignment by Geetu Mohandas and went ahead with the press statement by releasing the names of the crew without Stephy’s name in it, Aisha Sultana, who not only endorsed her support to the costume designer but also included her in her new film Flash. At that time of the controversy, both WC and Geetu Mohandas denied that such an episode never happened and it was only a figment of imagination. That was the time when Viduh Vincent, one of the founding members of the WCC had quit, accusing the body of bias and double standards through her Facebook post.
During that time, Aisha Sultana had said in a media statement that one night Steffie has called her and asked her about the dressing style of the people of her hometown, Lakshadweep. She had told Aisha that it was for a movie Moothon, directed by Geetu Mohandas. In the subsequent days too, she had called me to clarify on one point or the other. In fact, the requisite permissions to shoot the movie too was organised through Aisha Sultana. When they all came back from the shoot, except the girl who showed maximum enthusiasm about the costumes of the island was solely missing in action. Apparently, Aisha Sulthana realised that Stephy was dropped from the project. She didn’t call up Stephy to confirm her omission, eventually deciding not to call her and hurt her further. Aisha Sulthana was already having difference of opinion with the WCC and Geetu Mohandas on this issue. The reason why Aisha Sultana’s objection to them and their stance on the fact that a boy and a girl were excluded from their film for asking for wages from someone who started a group for women. Members of the same organization once sat down and said, “Women are being treated badly by men in movies and women who do not stand up to it are being dismissed.”
“Whether there is a big difference between the action of a member of the organization who dismisses you if you ask for a wage and the action of someone you mentioned earlier, the two are one,” Aisha Sultana had said. “And yet, as an associate director, I was willing to extend all the help on the island, only because they are making a film and I know what the hassle of making a film is” Aisha had said.
“I will still help, because I love cinema and not because we are scared to take on the might of an actress who came to the cinema before I was born. (Which Geetu Mohandas was alleged to have told Stephy that the former came to the celluloid world before the latter was born).
“I have nothing to fear from actress Geetu Mohandas. I like their director and I still oppose their stance,” Aisha Sultana had said back then and added: “… Now you can see the name of the person who was reluctant to say Stephy’s name…I can’t help but react when I see Stephy blaming everyone too, because….Implement policies honestly …Stand with the truth….the ‘Mother-in-law can have it even in kitchen’ practice should be completely taken off. We are all equal, we can work together, love each other and move forward honestly…..”