Published: 10th April 2020
This Malayalam web series was shot entirely at the director's house because of the lockdown. Check it out!
Akkuvum Ikkuvum is a Malayalam YouTube web series made by a group of friends
Binge-watching Money Heist, Dalgona coffee and random quarantine challenges are trending in social media. What better plans can we have during this lockdown? Well, WhatsApp may have been the place where all these challenges found virality, but to Robin Varghese and his team from Alappuzha, Kerala, the messaging app is where their new YouTube web series Akkuvum Ikkuvum took shape.
Akkuvum Ikkuvum is an eight episode Malayalam web series, and as the name suggests it features a Class VII student Akku and Ikku, who is an incarnation of God in the form of a kid. "Two episodes are out already. The entire shoot happens at my home, and the characters are my family members," laughs Robin, who is the editor, director and cinematographer of the series.
Akku and Ikku
Discussing the ideation, Robin shares, "We had planned to make a short film, but the Coronavirus outbreak messed our plans up. So, I was talking to Shinu John Chacko to come up with some fruitful plans during the lockdown. After some brainstorming, we decided to come with a comical web series featuring kids and their fantasies. Shinu came up with the script, I decided to use my cousins and Aman Reji, a friend, volunteered to do the sound design and mixing."
Once the plan was sorted, the team got cracking within the confines of their home. "The entire web series was shot at home. Shinu used to call me while writing the script to know who kind of resources we had, be it things or people, available at home. I used to list them to him, and he carefully framed the story accordingly," says the 22-year-old. The lead characters Akku and Ikku are played by Robin's cousins Shone Yohannan and Remin Reji respectively. "I handled the camera, lighting and also instructed the dialogues to the kids. Since I am taller than the kids, I had to stand on my knee, with a camera on one hand and an emergency lamp for the lighting on the other. Despite all this physical and mental stress, it was a fun package on the whole," Robin recollects.
The posters for the web series were designed by Ashwin Issac Shaji and Zaheer Bilal
But what makes this series outstanding? "The highlight of this series is that none of the team members met before, during or after the production. I would definitely call it a web series which was developed through WhatsApp," he adds.
Being a zero-budget series, Robin tells us that the successful output is due to their teamwork. "Necessity is the mother of invention. We had limited resources. As it is locked down, we have a character constraint too. To overcome this, we used voice-overs. Many friends helped us with this aspect. They modulated their voice and sent it to us by recording it on their phone," shares Robin.
Though they made it in a short notice, sacrificing their meals and sleep, Robin says that encouragement is something which humanity seems to forget. "Though our concept is different, people have barely noticed it. Also, when we share the links, they rarely give us any feedback. This is heart-breaking. But still, our project designer, Noble Sam Prince and other team members promote it and encourage us to follow our passion of film making without considering the end result. I strongly believe that this is a learning curve," he concludes.