26 Sep – We all know the tale of Little Red Riding Hood, of how she finds a wolf in her grandmother's bed but seems to remain oblivious of the fact.
It was this that inspired Malaysian filmmaker Karthik Shamalan to pen "The Farm: En Veettu Thottathil", a slasher film that puts a dark twist on the fairy tale.
Admitting that he has always liked the story of Little Red Riding Hood, he said that he was fascinated by the girl's failure to spot the wolf even while staring it right in the face, which sparked a thought in him.
"In society, there are a lot of women who can't see the real face of men. That's the idea behind [the movie]," said Karthik during the movie's press conference held yesterday at TGV Cinemas 1 Utama.
"The Farm" follows a hearing-impaired girl and her encounter with the various kinds of men in her life; one whose nice intentions hide a darker motive, one with bad intentions initially who later repents, and one who abuses women, which the director portrays as 'an animal'.
Set in a fictional world, the movie was fully filmed in just 40 days in Malaysia and later underwent sound mixing in Chennai, India.
The maze-like set with the multiple rooms – 33 in total – was built in the director's own backyard. Due to the many doors, the director shared that different lightings had to be used to differentiate one door from the next.
Prior to showing in local cinemas, the movie was screened at film festivals in Puerto Rico, Los Angeles and Mexico.
It holds the distinction as being the only Malaysian movie to date under the genre that has been screened at the three film festivals and was even repeated three times at the Puerto Rico film festival due to demand.
Interestingly, what was screened at the film festivals is exactly what local audiences will see in cinemas. Apart from the mosaic blurs in some scenes, the storyline and everything else in the movie remains the same.
Karthik mentioned that he did not want to create separate versions because he wants there to be no marked difference between what is shown locally and what is shown internationally.
Given its success even before being released theatrically, a sequel might be on the cards. When asked of the possibility, the director replied, "It all depends on the success of the movie but as for the script, yes, there is a sequel."
"The Farm: En Veettu Thottathil" made its Singapore premiere on 22 September and will open in 20 locations in West Malaysia this 28 September.