Chennai Spy

Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Chennai film unit survives Indonesia earthquake

A Tamil film unit which was shooting a documentary film in Indonesia on the illfated day the powerful earthquake struck and took more than 3000 lives, survived and returned to the city safe and sound.

The Chennai based serial and documentary producer Dr. Krishnaswamy of Krishnaswamy Associates who has produced award winning documentaries like Indus Valley to Indira Gandhi along with his crew was shooting for a new documentary Indian Imprints at Bantul in Java Island, one of the worst affected areas. The unit was staying at a hotel in that area three days before the earthquake hit the place.

Narrating the entire incident a spokesperson from Krishnaswami Associates said, “Dr Krishnaswamy along with his wife and producer Dr Mohana, daughter Lata and cinematographer Madhu Ambat with three other technicians were on a shooting assignment for the documentary Indian Imprints which showcases ancient monuments of Indian heritage in the far east, including the well known Angkor Wat and Bayon in Cambodia, Borabudur and Prambanan in Indonesia.

They were staying in Hotel Melia Purosani at Yogyakarta at Java Island. After three days of shooting, they left for a nearby town for the fourth day. The shooting continued till late night and hence the unit could not return to their hotel and stayed 40 km away from Yogyakarta in another hotel. The next day early morning at about 6.10 am. they could feel a tremor and every one came out of the hotel at once.

Later they realised that it was an earthquake which struck the Java Island. It was then that they heard that Melia Purosani Hotel where they were staying earlier was badly damaged by the quake and they were not allowed to enter Yogyakarta.” According to Krishnaswamy, it was by God’s grace the entire unit had survived and it was a nightmarish incident that has left a deep scar in his mind. Now they are in the process of rescheduling their shooting locales.

Dr.Krishnaswamy is the brother of famous classical dancer Padama Subramanian.

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