Even as special teams work relentlessly to trace the bodies of actors Anil Kumar and Raghav Uday, who died in the tragic incident that occurred while shooting Masti Gudi at TG Halli Reservoir, the Kannada film industry, prominent stars and technicians are shell-shocked.
The futility of hindsight will not make any difference, but it will go a long way in changing the current scenario where there are no stringent rules in place. They question how such an incident could have taken place. Raising serious questions about negligence due to hasty planning and a complete absence of safety measures before shooting risky scenes, the actors, directors and technicians are yet to come to terms with such an unfortunate and avoidable loss of two rising stars.
Century Star Dr Shivarajkumar feels that it was “very unfortunate” saying, “I am at loss of words to even recollect what has happened. I do not understand how non-swimmers were made to do it (such stunts) without proper safety measures. Life is a beautiful gift which cannot be taken lightly. It is nothing but two gifts thrown away right in front of our eyes. It is a warning to all of us. It is high time that all the concerned bodies of the film industry come together and discuss it (safety) with a serious agenda and come up with proper mechanisms to avoid such risks in the future. We will definitely stand by the victim’s family but first we have to understand that no life can be put at risk at any cost.”
Echoing the same angst is actress Amulya, the heroine in Masti Gudi starring alongside Duniya Vijay. She could not believe such an incident had taken place.
“I thought it was some kind of a prank. But when I learnt from the media, I was totally shocked. The two actors were very humble and good at heart even though they looked massive. They encouraged me during a sequence where I had to climb an elephant for the film, and were so confident. They were so supportive and it’s unbelievable that they have been taken away in such a manner. I just hope that some miracle will bring them back alive.”
While social media is raging with shock, horror and extreme sadness at such an avoidable accident, actor and director Ramesh Aravind feels, “Films are finally a drama, and there are so many advanced methods available to ensure that risks are minimised. It is very unfortunate that a dare devil stunt resulted in the loss of two talented budding actors. Several precautionary measures could have easily been put in place, which can be erased using computer graphics.”
Stunts behind the camera are always a risky proposition and noted stunt choreographer Thriller Manju strongly feels that if the two had expressed fear or indecision before attempting such a stunt, they should not have been allowed to do it, “It is very wrong on the part of all the parties involved to have made the decision to let them jump. They could have easily placed at least two boats nearby (at a distance of 20 feet) and the actors themselves could have been given floating attire worn inside for extra safety. It was a total miss-planned venture which went awfully wrong, taking away the life of two innocent actors who aspired for a great career in the industry after lot of struggle.”
But there are others who question the lack of accountability in an industry where there are no checks and balances. Director Guruprasad points out that there is no control over the functioning of the industry, and many resort to trial and error to get work done, “I have always stressed that every person involved in the film-making process needs to be compulsorily insured, right from the beginning of a project. However, many take it lightly.”
But if blame has to be given, actor Jaggesh blames the stunt choreographer who failed miserably to ensure the safety of the two actors who were only doing their job....