A rising star

From the south

A rising star

A  new star has risen in Tamil cinema and it is hard not to take note. Sundeep Kishan, who is a well-known face in Telugu cinema, seems to have announced his arrival in Tamil cinema as well, with his last film Maanagaram setting the cash registers at the box office ringing. His next three films too are all being watched with great interest by industry insiders.

First among these is the Tamil film Mayavan, which is a crime thriller that revolves around the acts of a serial killer. It is no secret that Sundeep’s next film in Telugu, Krishna Vamsi’s Nakshatram, is among the most talked about projects in recent times. The third film that has caught the attention of film buffs is Aram Seidhu Pazhagu, a bilingual that is being made in Tamil and Telugu. The film is being directed by one of Tamil cinema’s most bankable and respected directors, Suseenthiran.

Some excerpts from a conversation:

‘Maanagaram’ has been an overwhelming success...
I am very happy about the phenomenal response to the film. What makes me feel extremely happy is the fact that long ago, when I heard that story, I had chosen to produce this film myself. Then, Prabhu came along and said he wanted to produce that film, and we readily and happily agreed. Today, when both the audience and the critics say that the film is great, what pleases me more than the film’s success itself is the fact that the faith we had in that story has been proved right. This is my first Tamil film in four years, and this is where I was born and brought up. So, this success gives me great satisfaction.

Industry insiders say that you are now doing more Tamil films than Telugu ones...

Actually, I am doing an equal number in both languages. The reason why people think that I am doing more Tamil films than Telugu ones is because, right now, in Telugu, I am working on Nakshatram. It’s a huge project. So, I thought it would be nice if I worked only on that film until it’s finished. We have been shooting on this big project for the last one year. We have already shot for it for over 120 days, and the project is on the verge of completion. We have another 15 to 20 days of shooting left. Maanagaram has released and Mayavan is awaiting release. So, now after these two films, I am doing a bilingual film that is being directed by Suseenthiran sir. Also, after films like Baahubali, language is no longer a barrier.

Is ‘Mayavan’ based on a real-life incident?

Mayavan is not based on a real life incident. I play a character called Kumaran. He’s an inspector who has moved from a small town to the city. He is a genuine cop who takes his job very seriously. This character is short-tempered and is very
interesting to watch.

Are you deliberately picking roles that will portray you as the ‘angry young man’?

Directors keep offering me such characters. Maybe they believe I suit the character of an angry person, I don’t know. But as far as I am concerned, I only look at the story rather than my character in it. Among the stories that came my way, I found these two stories — Maanagaram and Mayavan — to be the best and therefore, I picked them. In fact, in the next film that I am working on, Aram Seidhu Pazhaghu, I play a very docile guy who prefers to keep away from problems. Suseenthiran sir deliberately wanted to cast me as a soft person. With regard to characters,
I look for genuineness.

Is there a chance that Sundeep Kishan will turn a director some day?

No. It’s very difficult. Directors are truly great. When we watch a movie, it only takes us a few minutes to criticise. But a director’s job is so tough. First, they have to convince all the actors. Then, they have to explain the scene to all the actors in a manner they understand. After this, they will have to shoot the sequence. They will have to find a location for that sequence. More importantly, that location has to fit their budget. So many things are involved in filming a scene. The same holds good for assistant directors as well. They will slog for a product for which they will not get any credit. But yes, I do have an intention to produce films. However, I will do that after I earn a little money!

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