Rocketry: The Nambi Effect, R Madhavan’s directorial debut, premiered at 75th Cannes Film Festival Thursday. Attending were Minister of Information and Broadcasting Anurag Thakur, composer AR Rahman and former ISRO scientist Nambi Narayanan. R Madhavan, dressed in a dapper blue suit, was seen welcoming the dignitaries, according to ANI.
In the film, Madhavan plays former Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) rocket scientist Nambi Narayanan. Head of ISRO’s cryogenics division, Narayanan was falsely accused of espionage and arrested in 1994. All charges against him were dismissed by the Supreme Court in 1998.
Earlier, in a chat with Variety, Madhavan said he decided to direct the film because no one else was well versed in the scientific information that was an essential part of the film. He said, “At that time, for somebody to understand rocket science or liquid fuel engine or what is rocket or what is specific impulse, or what is escape velocity and how she should be represented, a ready director of this caliber in the industry was next to impossible. He added: “So the choices were – throw the movie or take the leap as a director.”
The actor also mentioned that before Rocketry, he had never even shot a movie on an iPhone. He told the publication, “I feel like I did my duty. I feel a sense of pride. I feel like I’ve defined and achieved what I want in terms of telling a story.
Madhavan explained that he had to put on various hats while making Rocketry: The Nambi Effect as he was the producer, director and actor of the project. He said, “I come in as a producer, sort out all the production issues for the day, and then I come in as a director and set myself up to see what I’ve envisioned and hope to achieve. Then, while the lighting is happening, the director is expelled from my body and I become Nambi Narayanan.
India is the “country of honor” at the Cannes Film Market this year. The Indian delegation, led by Minister of Information and Broadcasting Anurag Thakur, includes among others AR Rahman, Shekhar Kapur, Urvashi Rautela, Pooja Hegde and Tamannaah Bhatia. Indian actor Deepika Padukone is one of the jury members of the festival this year while the regular festival Aishwarya Rai Bachchan also walked the red carpet.