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Siraj Syed

Siraj Syed is the India Correspondent for and a member of FIPRESCI, the International Federation of Film Critics. He is a Film Festival Correspondent since 1976, Film-critic since 1969 and a Feature-writer since 1970. He is also an acting and dialogue coach. 



Trailer and music launched for first Marathi underwater supernatural thriller, Gadad Andhar

Trailer and music launched for first Marathi underwater supernatural thriller, Gadad Andhar

Shot 110 feet below sea level, in the sea near the Maldives coast, Gadad Andhar, meaning intense darkness, breaks new ground in the Marathi film universe. The trailer of the film was released on 17 January 2023, at Famous Preview Theatre, Mahalaxmi, Mumbai, in the presence of the cast and crew, and media. A song, ‘Dariya dariya’ (dariya means sea), was also shown. It is a background number expounding on the theme of the film. The line producers of the film, Malhotra brothers, had to travel far and wide with the director to find a suitable location and the kind of ship that would meet the needs of the script. Finally, they found one, off the coast of Maldives.

Captain Avadesh Singh and Varsha Singh have produced the film, under the banner of Elula Future Vision Pvt. Ltd. Avadhesh is Hindi speaking while Varsha is a Maharashtrian. She comes from an IT background and had developed an app called Elula, and that is what finally led to the selection of this subject. A seafarer for 15 years, maritime Captain Avadhesh said that the subject was close to his heart, since it dealt with underwater exploits and a sunken ship. Varsha, who had accompanied her husband on many of his sailing trips, also feels that the sea is a part of her life. She was born and grew-up in the Konkan area of coastal Maharashtra, in Raigad. Raigad is one of the districts in Konkan Division of Maharashtra and the Arabian Sea coast forms the western boundary of the district. Director Pradnyesh Kadam has worked as assistant to many Hindi film directors, including Sanjay Leela Bhansali. Most of the cast had to learn scuba-diving for the film, although a couple of them had some experience in the field.

Along with the song 'Dariya, dariya....', this film also has a lullaby and a theme song written by Abhishek Khankar and composed by singer-composer Rohit Shyam Raut, in his own voice. These songs, released on Zee Music Marathi, are sung by Juilee Joglekar Raut (who is Mrs. Raut) along with Divya Kumar. Each song has its own importance in the screenplay and these songs carry the story forward. In fact, the trailer is based on the song, ‘Dariya daria’.

Gadad Andhar is co-written by director Pradnyesh Kadam, Laukeek and Chetan Mule. Jay Dudhane, who has reached millions of homes through the reality shows, Bigg Boss and MTV Splitsvilla X3, is playing the lead role in the film. He was a towering presence at the event, with his muscular, toned physique. Jay had just played a cricket match and led his team to victory before coming to the trailer launch. He shared with the audience that shooting underwater meant that they had only eight minutes to shoot every time they went under, because oxygen ran out after eight minutes. Actress Neha Mahajan is his companion in his sea exploits down under. She went to Karnataka and stayed there for a month, learning breath control from a guru, to help her manage her underwater forays.

Apart from this, actors like Shubhangi Tamble, Akash Kumbhar, Chetan Mule, Aarti Shinde, Shree and child artiste Astha have also played various characters. Little Astha won many hearts when she spoke about her experience in the film and thanked all those who helped her deliver the required performance. A few of the actors are making their film debut with Gadad Andhar. Pravin Wankhede is the executive producer of this movie and the songs have been arranged by Adinath Patkar.

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About Siraj Syed

Syed Siraj
(Siraj Associates)

Siraj Syed is a film-critic since 1970 and a Former President of the Freelance Film Journalists' Combine of India.

He is the India Correspondent of and a member of FIPRESCI, the international Federation of Film Critics, Munich, Germany

Siraj Syed has contributed over 1,015 articles on cinema, international film festivals, conventions, exhibitions, etc., most recently, at IFFI (Goa), MIFF (Mumbai), MFF/MAMI (Mumbai) and CommunicAsia (Singapore). He often edits film festival daily bulletins.

He is also an actor and a dubbing artiste. Further, he has been teaching media, acting and dubbing at over 30 institutes in India and Singapore, since 1984.

Bandra West, Mumbai


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