Tell us something
My dad is a driver and two of his brothers are in
cine field. I came into the film industry because
of my uncles. My uncle did a film but it was never
released. Hence he dissuaded me from entering the
industry. However, I did not listen to him as I was
adamant to have a film career and joined as an assistant
director to ST Saba when he was doing a film called
Naam. Later I joined Abavaanan in his Irandu Kangal
and with Ezhil in Deepavali. Although I worked in
three films, my contribution to the script and story
discussion was more.
How did Vennila
Kabbadi Kuzhu happen?
After I worked in Deepavali, I struggled hard and
completed the script for Vennila Kabbadi Kuzhu and
through a friend I met Lakshman and with his help,
I finalized the cast, technicians, locations and everything
but a producer for VKK. My friends used to tease me
for this. But I believed that when I am completely
ready with everything, the rest is easy. And again
through Lakshman I met Anand Chakravarthy who liked
the script of VKK and that’s how the film was
What are the
struggles that you faced?
I faced the struggles that all debut directors face.
It is very difficult to execute a project. There are
very many troubles which are all normal and are not
exclusive to me. When a film gets completed, it crosses
all these hurdles to reach the finishing point. There
were many negative talks about VKK but I was confident
that it will do well and VKK was created with such
gave you the courage to go in for newcomers?
Kadhal and Paruthiveeran gave me the courage.
These films had really done well which is
the main reason for me to go in for an all
new cast. More than me, a producer should
come forward to make a film with newcomers.
That is very important. I wanted new faces
to bring in a realistic feel. If an established
actor features in a film, the audience views
only the artiste and not the character. My
script demanded new faces and I chose them.
Kadhal and Paruthiveeran gave
me the courage
How did you
shoot your next film with Karthi?
I was to do Azhagar Saamiyin Kudirai after VKK and
the work was on. But for some reasons, it did not
commence. There were many talks about financial viability.
That’s when I decided I will go in for a film
with a star and then come back to do ASK. I readied
a script with city backdrop which was Naan Mahaan
Alla. And I wanted an artiste around 25-26 years who
has not earlier acted in city flicks and Karthi fitted
the bill perfectly. I told him the story and he liked
How do you conjure
up your screenplay?
When I wrote the script for VKK, I was keen that
the film should appeal to people who do not understand
Kabbadi. I know that Kabbadi is a dying sport. But
for the audience, the film should move forward with
its emotions and characters despite the lack of knowledge
on Kabbadi. I have been a part of various discussions
and have a fair idea on how the screen play should
proceed, where the audience would applaud and things
like that. I wrote the screenplay keeping in mind
the response of the audience in combination with my
idea. That’s how I work. My current screen play
may not appeal to me after ten years. After ten years,
I need to make my story based on the conditions that
would prevail then like how Mani sir travels along
Gautham Menon said ASK is
was Gautham Menon’s reaction to Azhagar
Saamiyin Kudirai is the novel penned by Bhaskar
Sakthi. When I narrated the story to Arjun,
he liked it and referred me to Madan, one of
the producers of VTV. I told him the story of
ASK which he loved and started discussing about
the financials. I told him that I can talk about
the money related matter after the release of
NMA. Later on I told the story to Gautham sir
and he opined that it was fresh with no single
routine stuff. Gautham Menon said ASK is 100%
success and is very happy to produce it.
What do you
like about Gautham Menon? Did he correct your script?
When I was narrating the story of ASK, I expected
Gautham Menon to come up with some of his ideas as
he is an established director himself. However, he
never made a single correction and said that if I
make the film the way I told him, it would be a super
us something about Azhagar Saamiyin Kudirai
am very happy to do ASK. Mostly, directors will
miss their second film. I worked carefully in
my second film too and fortunately for me, Naan
Mahaan Alla also has received good response.
My third film is Azhagar Saamiyin Kudirai. I
have been receiving mixed reactions about me
from everyone. But the answer to everyone lies
in the release and success of ASK which I promise
will be loved by the audience and will be a
complete family entertainer. Some films will
have all the ingredients of success and ASK
is one of them.
Some films will have all the
ingredients of success and ASK
is one of them
I don’t have any story right now
be very honest, I don’t have any story
right now. After ASK, I am planning to try a
different genre with a different artiste. After
VKK, NMA happened and now I am into ASK. I will
take a breather after ASK and will do my fourth
you have stories for Ajith or Vijay?
do have stories for Ajith and Vijay. It is wrong
to think that Ajith and Vijay will do only mass
scripts. One needs to tell a story that would
impress them. When I will be doing a film with
Ajith or Vijay, it will not be a routine one
but a different one.
I do have stories for Ajith and