It’s her dream project, and it’s getting a shape in India. Mythical Norwegian actress Liv Ullman’s project Liv & Ingmar about her stormy passionate fecund and far-reaching relationship with Swedish director Ingmar Bergman, is going through its post-production work – the mixing, background music, editing and sound design – in Mumbai at the Canaries Postsound studio. An unprecedented move. No European film project has undergone post-production work in India before.
When one got to know about the hush-hush proceedings at Yashraj, the immediate impulse was to find out if Liv was in Mumbai.
Resul Pookutty, the sound designer of Liv & Ingmar was contacted. He was understandably evasive. He finally relented to reveal, “Yes, we’re currently doing the entire post-production work of Liv Ullman’s film at Yashraj. I, the film’s director Dheeraj Akolkar and a few other technicians are here.”
Liv, we are told, is expected to arrive soon, quietly on an undisclosed date. Says Resul, “She is very very fond of India. She was here about a decade ago, and she remembers every single detail of her visit including the little girl who danced for her at a function. She’s definitely coming here because her most cherished dream project (Liv & Ingmar) is being edited and put together in Mumbai.”
Interestingly, Liv’s film has no Indian connection except its director and sound designer. Says Resul, “In that sense, Liv & Ingmar is unique. A part of Slumdog Millionare‘s post-production was done in India. But that was a Mumbai-based film. In terms of theme, location, content and characters Liv & Ingmar is not Indian at all. The only Indian aspects of the docu-fictional film are the director and me.”
Resul had to in fact “import” all the sounds from Scandinavia. Explains the sound designer, “95 percent of the incidental sounds in the film had to be recorded in Norway and Sweden. For example, there were shots of birds flying. And when we tried the local bird sounds, Liv turned around and said, ‘That doesn’t sound like the birds out there at all.’ So we went all the way to Norway and Sweden to record bird tweets, and all other incidental sounds and brought them back here to Mumbai.”
Liv & Ingmar opens in Europe on August 26. Ironically, in spite of its Indian director and sound designer, it has not even found a distributor for an Indian release.
It’s hoped that Liv Ullman through her visit to Mumbai would create a renewed awareness of Ingmar Bergman’s timeless classics.