Mitali Kakar – Producer, Environmentalist, Scuba Diving Instructor.
Mitali‘s first brush with Prahlad Kakar was when P.K. auditioned her for a shampoo commercial, as a young University student foraying into the world of modeling. She not only got the part but also a position in the company as an intern production assistant after finishing her degree in mass communication in 1983. She worked her way up from being a flunky and “mundu” (as she charmingly puts it) to the Boss’s Minder, (as Prahlad amusedly puts it!) when they got married in January of 1985.
She then set up ‘Offshoot’ in 1986– a line production company handling ad films, documentaries, corporate films and the works. With high aptitude and a keen eye, she utilized strong skill sets for time management, logistics, production and finance. 3 years after the birth of their first born Arnav she set up Offspring (and got him to write out the sunny company logo). This film production company doing international productions across Vietnam, Myanmar, Philippines and Thailand from 1992 onwards. She manages a possey of interns, techies and thinkers with unmatched panache and efficiency. From budgeting, to scheduling, crew to equipment and suppliers, pre to post, she had mastered every element of a first-rate production to set an unparalleled system of work, for the company. Always encouraging new talent, she has an innate ability to spot people with talent and potential.
In the quest to give back Mitali and Prahlad founded ‘Reef Watch Marine Conservation’, established in 1993, doing education and awareness programs in the field of marine ecology. Taking it as a personal challenge, she continues to pursue spreading awareness, doing research and underwater documentaries. Being a member of the National Wildlife Board of India, she has been an active enthusiast in protecting coral reefs and endangered species. Reef Watch conducts innovative school programs like “Eco Search” bringing the EVS curriculum alive for ICSE and IB students by taking them to Andaman’s and Lakshadweep , where she involves the expertise of ‘Lacadives’, conducting certification courses in scuba diving and snorkeling and combining it with marine education . In short, she has a unique way of balancing her 3 boys, film producing, her NGO work, scuba diving, Volunteer and Social Outreach work, friends and family and is always multi-tasking on the move! ‘Disciplined’ being her middle name, Mitali Kakar is always the one with a plan.
Kenneth Dawson – Director/Editor
It is not ironical that the man who cuts timelines in an edit suite with great skill, surrounded by virtual technology, can up and go on esoteric trips with as much ease. Kenny has always been one such guy in our organization. Barring the spiritual retreats he disappears to every now and then, our man on the machine has shaped our films to a style he can put his watermark on. Terming him just an editor might sound inadequate as he has fashioned the art of cutting a video in the true sense. Starting out early, he assisted P.K on several films. Gradually he started to direct independently and did some memorable films for Britannia biscuits in the late 90’s. Since he started out as a flunky (we all do!) at Prahlad Kakar, training new ones was never an issue. Kenny patiently mentored, groomed, trained and broke bread with a bunch of Prahlad Kakar flunkies – people who started out with no clue but just passion. Today, they all are names to reckon with in the business. As an editor, it goes without saying that Kenny always brings out value on the cutting table. With his immeasurable quest for creativity, an eye for detail and passion for music, he has the gift to bring forth even a discarded shot by the director, style and approach it in a manner that it turns out to be the most relevant shot of the film, making it memorable.
Rumaan Kidwai – Director
Rumaan Kidwai started with Radio and then dabbled in theatre and documentaries in Delhi. He got his first big break in feature films when he assisted Mira Nair in ‘Monsoon Wedding’. When he expressed his desire to come to Bombay and work in advertising while shooting a documentary film with a common friend, he was immediately directed to Prahlad and designated flunkie at Genesis. Rumaan always had a great flair for creative writing and used this talent to put together treatments and concepts for the challenging ’30 second’ format. He grew with the company and began to understand Prahlad’s vision with such clarity that execution came naturally to him. With his cult vision look and feel, his treatment for every project increasingly gained Prahlad’s admiration time and again. With a passion for direction, he has grown with Genesis and has developed his own style of independent filmmaking. Having worked closely with Prahlad on some of our leading Brands today, Rumaan has done films not only for the domestic market but also for emerging new markets.
Rajneel Singh – International Director/Editor
Born of Indian ancestry in the South Pacific island nation of Fiji, raised in the United States, lived in numerous countries and finally based among the beautiful and verdant landscapes of New Zealand, Raj is a writer, director and editor who exemplifies the Kiwi 'can do' attitude towards filmmaking. Completely self-taught, Raj's first foray into filmmaking was an amateur attempt at a short film set in the universe of the "Matrix" movies which not only because the most widely seen short film in New Zealand history (with an estimated 8 million downloads since 2003!), but also the attention of "Matrix" directors Andy and Larry Wachowski! He then went on to self-finance his own original award-winning short film BIG BAD WOLVES in 2006, direct several music videos and low-budget commercials and finally produce a short film with "Lord Of The Rings" producer Barrie Osborne in the 2010, entitled BLANK SPACES, which went on to win the 'Best Short Film' prize at the MBF Australasian Indian Film Festival. In between all of that, Raj also spent a collective year as a creative-writer and director's assistant at The Sweet Shop: New Zealand's premiere ad-film house. Apart from writing and directing, Raj is an accomplished and much sought-after editor in New Zealand with several commercials, television shows and documentaries in his resume. Having had to multi-task a variety of roles in his short career, Raj has tremendous knowledge in areas of production, post and creative, with a strong background in narrative filmmaking and story-telling.
Tracy D'Souza – Production Manager / Designer
'Workaholic' being her middle name, Tracy has been with Genesis since 2008. A Production executive, she has been instrumental in detailing out every production detail with precision and running a tight unit on the floor. From budgeting the minutest of things in cost sheets to casting even the least significant secondary artist, getting approvals from clients or negotiating deals with vendors, she eats and sleeps production now. Being a stickler for detail she is able to anticipate and have back up plans and options to ensure there are no delays or hold ups. Her co ordination skills are put to test daily while trying to email, schedule in, and coordinate clients and projects. In her vocabulary there are no words like “no” or “it can’t be done” or “it’s not possible”. Even on a day that Mumbai is home because of the floods drinking coffee, Tracy is found in the office on the job and drinking coffee. If there is a way, she will always find it!
Floating Population of Flunkies
At any given point of time Genesis has a bunch of enthusiasitic trainees ,interns and film students all starting off as flunkies… Some of whom graduate quickly to AD, editors,production assistants! Most of whom become successful Directors and producers in the future.. Genesis has an illustrious list of ‘now celebrated’ flunkies which the Genesis Alumni lists. Prahlad has been known to have the ‘Midas touch’ where students of film, models, advertising professionals who have worked with him even once have been consecrated by the golden touch and their careers have prospered. Being a ‘Genesis Flunkie’ no matter how menial, slave like and underpaid, is like a badge of honor. Even years later, previous Genesis flunkies and subsequent flunkies have always shared a very healthy camaraderie and network.