Goal- oriented expert | Daily News

Goal- oriented expert

Jeevan to resume film directing

Once well known for his cinematic skills and the technological smartness on videography and now as photographer, film Director Jeevan Chandimal is to resume the work of his debut film after a short silence period. Jeevan had concluded the pre-production of this film and was expecting to begin shooting when the film’s script was banned by the previous government for political reasons in 2015.

Jeevan is an expert in film directing and editing, having experiences spanning over 20 years in the field since 2000. He was proud to say “My contribution is there behind many of the art pieces in Sri Lanka.”

He introduced himself as a character which is achieving own goals progressively but slowly. Graphic Designing and Video Editing are the sectors in which he began his artistic stint.

Next he joined to advertising firms and directed about 200 TV commercials. Opening ‘Jeevan creation’, a fully-equipped studio with audio and non-linear editing facilities in 2004 made him a Recording Engineer with contribution to nearly 60 teledramas, seven film and 4,000 songs in the studio followed by several film documentaries directed by him.

He was reaching the climax of his professional life by 2015 with starting the pre-production of this debut film.

Jeevan is currently the Official Photographer to the President and the Director (Photography) of the President’s Media Division.

Q: How would you introduce yourself?

Hi I am a film director, originally. Cinema is my soul. No matter where we were, cinema was the only topic for us day and night even. But, the reason behind me becoming a photographer is somewhat unique. It was the respect I had for that great personality; President Gotabaya Rajapaksa whichmade me a photographer. Photography was my hobby too. But political photography is a field which I had never touched before.

Q: How did you become the President's Official Photographer?

I was with the President before he became the leader of this country. Following several attempts in three years, I made my first interaction with him somewhere in 2010. That was to present him one of the documentaries I directed. The attraction I had towards that great personality since that day for his knowledge and genuineness finally ended up me being placed in this position. I was of the view that he is the personality that my country needs to lead it to the future. So I must take part in that giant campaign to make him the leader of Sri Lanka.

Q: Trace the beginning of your cinematic journey.

Cinema is my soul. I cannot and would never give it up for any reason. My first entry to the field was as a Video Editor. That was in 2000. My contribution is there behind many of the art work of that time which made a revolution in the field. Next I joined some advertising firms and contributed to TV commercials.

I have edited several films produced by my colleagues before entering video documentaries directing.

Q: What are the documentaries that you have you directed?

I started my first documentary in 2007 – during a period which was very difficult for me. This was about how the LTTE negatively impacted on the country’s Tamil culture.

Many discouraged me in this endeavour. Some attempted to cheat on me, mislead me and even manipulate me for their benefit. The multiple challenges I confronted with such individuals resulted in giving up my first attempt. The second one was in 2012 and it was successful. It named ‘

The Last Phase’ and exhibited the production at Geneva, EU and the UK Parliaments as well. This was followed by the documentary ‘Revive in Kilinochchi – The City of Peace and Hope’ in 2013. It is the third one directed by me.

Q: Year 2004 was special for you.

Yes. That was the year I opened my own Digital Studio. It is in Kohuwala. This studio is fully-equipped with non-linear audio and video editing facilities. Around 4,000 songs, 60 teledramas and seven films were edited there. However, the studio remains temporarily closed as my busy schedule gives me no opportunity to make the use of it.

Q: What happened to your first film?

Despite all what I had to do and was doing, it was my dream to create a film of my own.

With time I started the preliminary work of my first film in 2015. I received permission from the Film Corporation and the Police but not from the Defense Ministry. A Canadian producer agreed by to fund the project at that time and we had the Muhurat ceremony too. However, the previous government banned the film script claiming that it would interrupt the country's reconciliation process.

Q: Was the script controversial?

The film was supposed to be based on a true story. The entire film runs focusing on the life journey of a Tamil Tiger who was categorized as a suicide bomber and his post-war life.

This created a controversy which resulted in the film being banned.

Q: Is it a Sinhala film?

This film targets not only the local crowd but several other countries such as India, Malaysia, Singapore and Japan. Therefore, the film comprises of three languages: Sinhala, Tamil and English. We had selected most of the locations in Japan where its government had pledged fullest support for the project. This story is blended with the Japanese Culture as well.

Q: What are you involved in now?

I was away from cinema after entering political photography. I am yet to resume my first film. I am going to start everything from the beginning now.

There are two new producers who have expressed their interest towards the project. More than half of the script is done. I expect the support of everyone who loves cinema to make this a success.

- LF