us about Vallakottai
Vallakottai was a film that was shot completely
with entertainment in mind and made for a family
audience. Arjun Sir has a lot of action in his
films but in this film comedy was given precedence
over action with a 60:40 ratio.
Arjun Sir has a lot of action in his
films but in this film comedy was
given precedence over action
What was the
action in the film like?
His introduction was with action. We have placed
action in places where it would be enjoyed by the
audience and the action sequences were done differently.
Arjun paid extra attention to the action scenes as
he knows that his fans expect action from him, after
all he is known as Action King Arjun.
There were 5 fight sequences, his introduction was
a fight scene and in the first half there are 2 other
fights. We kept the length correct, neither long enough
to bore nor too short. There are 2 fights in the 2nd
half and as a director I like his introduction fight
the best. Before shooting a fight, usually Arjun Sir
discusses it and we plan on how it’s going to
be done. Once we reach the spot, he will be fully
focused on executing it. At the spot, I don’t
ask him to do this or that, I leave the decision to
him as he has completed 154 films as hero and knows
to handle action well. He is very good at action choreography
and the climax and introduction fight sequences are
very good. We shot the climax in peak summer. He was
wearing a heavy costume but despite that he performed
Tell us about
the locations you shot
The location for the climax was a very tough place.
There was 108 degrees heat. We made a hill of straw,
usually it’s just about 9 ft but we made one
of 24 ft. It reflected the sun and it was tough even
for us. 60% were shot around Ernakulam and we matched
some of it with Chennai and the studio. Two songs
were canned in Mauritius and one in Ramoji Film City.
I cannot forget Ernakulam, the greenery, the backwater,
lot of travel in the boat. It’s amazing to think
that we have such locations inside India. I was inspired
to think of new ideas and felt very enthusiastic.
This story is not one that gives
the heroine importance
is the role of the heroine Haripriya like?
story is not one that gives the heroine importance.
The importance is for the hero and the heroine
does not have much work. However, its not like
she just appears in song sequences, the story
touches her too. Vallakottai is about an individual;
the hero is released from jail and goes to a
village named Vallakottai where fishing and
allied activities are the mainstay. He comes
there to fulfill a promise to his friend and
the series of events that take place there are
captured. The story revolves around the hero
and he happens to meet the heroine who is caught
in a problem. The story also tells how he solves
it. More than just glamour Haripriya has a role.
of your films have two heroines, what about Vallakottai?
True, most of my films have 2 heroines. However,
this film has just one but that was all that
was needed for my story. Unlike Vallakottai
Murugan, this hero has just one heroine.
Unlike Vallakottai Murugan, this
hero has just one heroine
The heroine does not look like
an A. Venkatesh film heroine
the heroine Haripriya glamorous in this film?
heroine does not look like an A. Venkatesh film
heroine. She is homely working somewhere and
wears a handbag. She is not a glamour doll in
the songs also. We had to keep things subdued.
She is a heroine who matches the film.
What about romance
in the film?
There is not much of love and romances. Haripriya
is a heroine suited to the story.
like Kuthu songs. Are there any?
I do specialize in Kuthu. There are just 3 songs
and a theme song. There is a kuthu song titled
Sarakku Readya Murukku Readya. Chenozhiye a
duet song. Magadheera is an offbeat song. For
that we took Kamban’s slogam Anjiley.
I do specialize in Kuthu
Tell us about
the music director?
Dina was lucky for the film. This film is going to
release on Diwali day. It was supposed to release
2 months ago, first in July and then on August 15th.
Since, he had re-recording time in whole of July;
he could put in a lot of effort. When you give more
time and there is less pressure, the quality increases
instantly. He had done a lot of quality enhancement,
when I saw it. And there were some portions I wanted
to be done differently, he had time to carry that
out. I think this film will be the best in his career.
Tell us about
your cameraman Anjaneyulu
The cameraman is Anjaneyulu and we call him Anj.
He has done one film Odi Polama and was introduced
to me by Arjun’s manager. Only while shooting,
I came to know that he had shot 10 -12 Telugu films.
I came to know that he has even directed a film in
Telugu. So though he was new to Tamil he had lot of
experience in Telugu and it was not like he was a
newcomer. He understood the language of a director,
his needs, how to adjust to a producer. He was very
Have you used
any new technology?
No, nowadays people do use DI to enhance the film’s
look but we have not used that. Neither have we used
a 500 frames camera or motion camera. We used the
Jimmy Jip and Steadicam only and did not use the Akila.
We have shot beautifully with what was available.
What about editing?
I have spoken about the tremendous work in this film
at the audio function. I have seen it with my own
eyes. When I observed the editor, I really like his
work. In Durai I liked his work. I saw what he had
done for this film in the rush cut and then we started
working further on it. After he had done two reels,
he caught the thread of what I wanted and worked fast
and enthusiastically. I was scared he was so fast
and wondered whether I would get what I want. But
I did. He is a talented editor and wants to do something
new and tries. For the song I gave it to the master
and did not go abroad. I did not see the rush and
wanted him to cut the rush. When I saw it, I was happy,
he had polished it manifold.
Why did you
cast Suresh in the film?
What is different in this film is Suresh; Karthik
had a charm in my previous film; he looks the same.
After Angadi Theru, people asked me to act in my own
film. They felt that if I did a commercial film, it
would be good. However, for the character in this
film, I had Prabhu in mind. However, we finally zeroed
in on Suresh. He had a shaved look in Asal but we
have given him a total makeover.
Are you acting
in any films?
Actually I have committed 3 films. I have one starting
on in Nov 8 , then January and February, all three
have different roles and new directors. Even if it’s
my own film where I am doing a character, I want to
make sure it will stand out. Initially, when people
saw the kind of character I played in Angadi Theru,
they scolded me because of the nature of the character.
So now, I know their expectations.
What is your
view of Behindwoods?
For any update on cinema, I go to Behindwoods and
am very happy to share my views on the site. I am
happy to share with you on Deepavali especially about
Vallakottai. I hope this will be a very special Deepavali,
which will light up your life and home. Thanks!