The last thirty days have been pretty exciting. Apart from the regular bits like our team trips, the mad tussles with the finance guys for budgets, impromptu popping up of spirits at six in the morning and the other shenanigans, we managed to pull off one of the toughest cover shoots that FHM has ever done. We baked meth, sentenced a serial killer for execution, turned a pretty girl into a vampire and generally wrecked havoc... Why? Just because we were saying #FHMSuperVillains!
And now that the magazine is out, you all know exactly what I am talking about. During the last couple of days that led to the day of the covershoot, everything that could possibly go wrong went haywire. When we reached the location, our production team was ‘baking’ meth. With just about 30 minutes to start on the Heisenberg look, our team was in the process of breaking glass, colouring them blue and giving me the chills! And with just about 15 minutes to walk into the Hannibal Lecter shot, we realised that the lenses for the character were missing. Overall, as I said, everything that could go wrong, went beyond wrong and set new standards. With characters as iconic as the ones we were trying to recreate, it was pertinent to do justice and not just glaze over things. I must say that our production team really stepped up and created sets and sourced props that were as close as possible to the real deal. Amod, our prosthetic specialist, drove all night from Ahmedabad to our location in Mumbai and straightaway got into the act and worked non-stop for ten hours to give life into these characters. Ace lensman, Suresh Natarajan, fought jet lag and picked up his Hasselblad to immortalise these icons for FHM.
And yeah... our stylist and her team made some 500 calls to get the perfect attire and embellishments for these looks.
But frankly, I must say that with the entire crew that managed and executed the photoshoot I don’t expect anything less. What actually pumped all of us up and the real person whose energy we were riding on was Emraan... our man of the moment. For someone who was recuperating from a really bad spell of viral, he literally went deep into the characters. During the entire ten hour process, we could feel the souls of these iconic characters flitting in and out of our studio.
When Emraan went into Heisenberg mode, I really thought that Pinkman was also on his way. When he came out as Lecter, we could feel the chill in the air and the ominous aura that Hopkins had created. With Aro, Emraan, and his co-star for the shoot, Elena Fernandes, took us back to the age of vampires and we were all rushing to find garlic and holy cross. And finally, it was time for the pièce de résistance...
The show stopper... The ultimate super villain... Joker. When this character came in front of the camera, his look, his walk, his expression... Everything reminded us of Heath Ledger. Emraan was gone and we had Nolan’s creation amongst us. I still can’t explain, or get over, the vibe of that particular moment.
Overall, a very productive and satisfying month for FHM. And now we are headed to another exciting location for one more interesting shoot...
Let’s see what all goes haywire this time!
-Hari Govind Nair