FOR YOU AND ME Official Trailer


Using image, sound and the medium of SMS text messages, ‘For You and Me’ is a film about yearning and the struggle to sustain relationships in a society of both physical as well as technological distances.

Direction and Script: Tanushree Das | Cinematography, Edit and Sound Design: Saumyananda Sahi | Sound Mix: Nithin Lukose | Text Animation: Chayaachobi


Chikka Putta | director’s note

Chikka PuttaThe most fertile ground for memory is often a sense of loss. Loss of what we once took for granted.

Till I was eleven, most of my childhood was spent in Sita School. Yet it was the experiences in other schools, colleges and systems of education that made me grapple to discover what it was that I once lived without a second thought.

The education system of India is presently undergoing a process of blanket standardization. Yet what is the relevance of an education if it has nothing to do with the particularities of each and every participant involved in the process of learning?

The name ‘Sita’ refers to the goddess born out of the ploughman’s furrow. Can we see the function of a school – and teacher – as facilitating an already present capacity for growth, instead of directing through external instruction? What would such pedagogy entail?

‘Chikka Putta’ has grown from three years spent with the students and teachers inhabiting the spaces I remember. I was privileged, along with my crew, to be trusted, accepted and accommodated into the private worlds of the children. And as the class activities unfolded, the idea of school itself blurred and stretched to embrace Life.

I hope this film will act as a catalyst for the personal memories of every viewer. I hope even more that this film makes real the possibility of a school that listens to childhood. And that this possibility is heard.

Saumyananda Sahi

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Chikka Putta | production stills

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‘Have You Seen the Arana’ @ MIFF 2014


MIFF 2014Golden Conch for Best Documentary Over 40 mins in the National Competition awarded to Sunanda Bhat for ‘Have You Seen The Arana’:

“The jury was not short of adjectives to praise this film: elegant, patient, meditative, and subtle. The director gently moves her audience towards a deep appreciation of the tribal, mythical connections between humanity and the ecosystems that sustain us all.”

Saumyananda Sahi awarded Best Cinematographer for Documentary Films in National Competition:

“This cinematographer’s work stands out for its reserved discipline, its beauty and attention to detail, and its overall contribution to the subtle tone of the film.”

Christopher Burchell awarded Best Sound for Documentary Films in National Competition:

“Rendered with great sensitivity and care, the sounds of the natural world, and of the human voice, are integral elements in bringing the director’s vision and message to the screen.”

Tempo Traveler | Playback 2013

Playback 01Playback 03Playback 04Playback 05Playback 07Playback 08Playback 12Playback 13Playback 14Playback 15Playback 16Playback 17Playback 18Direction: Karma Takapa | Cinematography: Saumyananda Sahi | Music: Christopher Burchell | Edit: Kislay

Chikka Putta | Small Things, Big Things | Official Trailer

Chikka Putta | Small Things, Big Things

Chikka Putta Poster 2 SmallIf this were a letter, the return address would be:

From the students and teachers of Sita School, Silvepura, Bangalore 560090, India.

If this were a diary, it would contain entries between 5th June 2012 an 28th April 2013.

‘Chikka Putta’ is a film that verges on being both:

I return to my first school and join with the present students and teachers in their everyday adventures of learning.

Puppets become Spiderman. A killer mosquito causes global panic. Children are found in a matchbox. Pre-historic man grows a tail. Children become adults, and teachers become children.

Through the stories that unfold we enter imaginary worlds and intimate relationships. ‘Chikka Putta’ is a celebration of when Education becomes Art.

– Saumyananda Sahi

Chikka Putta | paintings from the film by students of Sita School

Self Portrait_GirlGardening 01Gardening 02RunningDigging in the GardenKarate FightThe Band 02Teacher and Students 01

Chikka Putta: Objects in Time

The film set in Sita School has been given a new name: Chikka Putta – which in Kannada means all things Small and Dear.

As of 26th March 2013 we have completed the last major schedule of filming.

The last class was on history through objects. The children began by going through rubbish-bins to see what things we throw away and why, and discussing what clues our garbage might offer about our lives to future historians.  By making parallels about how we know about ancient civilizations like Egypt and Harappa through objects, the children slowly put together a ‘Time Capsule’ of durable things and descriptions they felt representative of their own lives, and buried it in the garden for the Future.

Below are a two stills taken from the class.

TypewriterMusical TapeKamal Swaroop:

Twins were born that year, unlikely twins, the typewriter and the chromosome. The typewriter was more evidently beautiful, a carrier of language on the full moons of its keys. The chromosome was the silent younger sister, who contained a more dangerous, secret language. She was a soothsayer, she was a scroll, much like the one that is inserted into the tabeez and strung around the neck of a child. Only this scroll did not protect, it decreed..the long cell called the DNA, would tell the organism what was ordained for it, what kind of life it must live.

Skreen Films Presents: Bhairav

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Youth of today are considered removed from the Indian Classical Tradition. ‘Bhairav’ challenges this generalization and celebrates the power of music over everything else.  No mind is more vulnerable than when it is in the state of ecstasy – Love. The film is about a teenager who takes a chanced step and is embraced by the unexpected.

Abhijit Patil, Pune, 1st January 2013

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