'I always believe in speaking my mind'

Strong role

'I always believe in speaking my mind'

Actor Sudeep is appearing in an avatar that he has never been seen in before in ‘Hebbuli’.

In the movie, he essays the role of a para commando. The actor has trained long and hard to get under the skin of the character.

Known to relish playing characters that he hasn’t essayed before, Sudeep feels ‘Hebbuli’’s story has been written in a different format and is sure to touch people’s lives in one way or the other. In an interview with Nina C George, he talks about the making of the film.  

What made you accept the project?

I play the role of a para commando but the film isn’t about the Army or war. The director has done well to weave in a beautiful story around a subject that not many people know about. The film stands out for its successful narrative and for the engrossing storytelling techniques.

What research has gone into understanding your character?

The role didn’t require me to study the character in a detailed way. If the story was about the life of a solider or a biopic, then I would have had to delve into the finer
details of the character.

Here I just needed to understand the decorum around the character and interpret
it in the best possible way.   

Did you have to undergo a major makeover?

I didn’t have to undergo any major changes but we’ve played around with the hairstyle. We experimented with different hairstyles and chose the one that suited the character. That seems to have clicked well. I also had to put on some weight for my role. I don’t follow any specific diet and don’t overeat neither do I  survive on junk food. So in this  context, I really enjoyed eating just to put on some weight. I had to look a little hefty in the uniform and the weight gain helped me carry off my look very well. I also had to shed weight almost immediately for my next project.    

On shooting in Kashmir...

We only had a ten-day schedule in Kashmir. Most of the movie has been shot in a small place, which is a two-hour drive from Srinagar. The place had its ups and downs but it was a heaven. There were certain spots where the vehicles couldn’t go and we had to negotiate the rough terrains. Sometimes, we even had to travel on horseback. The weather is so good that you really feeling like walking. We also got the opportunity to see some of the places in Srinagar that people  don’t normally get
to see.  

On working with Amala Paul....

My equation with Amala Paul is more to do with the character than with the person. The director was very clear about what he wanted from us. As an actor, if somebody is not too knotted up in their own space, then they become easy to work with. Amala was easy
to work with because she’s open to learning and suggestions.

Did you make any contribution of yours to the script? 

It’s always nice to open up and express your opinion whenever you feel strongly about something. I always believe in speaking my mind because I don’t want to return home and feel guilty about not having spoken my mind. It doesn’t matter if my suggestions are
incorporated or not, but at least I will be content that I put my point across. Everybody’s thoughts need to be collaborated to create a product. It can’t be just one’s man’s thoughts.   

Any unforgettable moment during the making of the film?
Everybody in ‘Hebbuli’ worked as a team.Even the producers Raghunath and Umapathy worked like employees and not like any other producer. We don’t know how the movie is going to fare at the box office but what has come through is the honesty and sincerity of the people associated with the project.

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