Interviewer : Divya Murali | Camera : Balaji | Coordination : Venkatesh | Text : Divya Murali
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About yourself and your entry into films

I am a Malayali and I entered film industry through dance. I am a trained classical dancer and since young age I have actively participated in dance shows and won accolades. I did always have to wish to get into cinema and later I started participating in reality shows. I participated in Amrita TV’s Super Dancer reality show and won awards and that is how I got noticed. My first film was in Malayalam with Mohanlal Sir called Ali Bhai. After that I worked in a few more Malayalam films and later on entered Tamil film industry with Bharath’s Muniyandi Vilangial Moonramandu. That is how I entered Tamil filmdom.

"Vijaya Ma'm gave me beauty


About the response you got for your character in Aadu Puli

I am actually very happy with the response the movie and my character have garnered. I always wanted to play heroine in a full commercial film and needed it to be a hit and Aadu Puli gave me just that. All thanks to Vijay Prakash Sir for making a different commercial film with so many characters. I am very blessed to have acted with senior and popular actors like KR Vijaya, Prabhu, and Ravi Chandran so early in my career. My character’s name in the movie is Anjali and I play the usual bubbly girl but like other commercial films were heroines have nothing much to do but just songs, mine was not like that. My friends who saw the movie’s poster were asking me doubtfully if I would have had anything to do with so many other characters in the film. But after watching the film they were convinced. The director has used my skills and I appear not just in songs but also in a lot of scenes So that is one good thing with the movie. My co-star Aadhi’s name in the movie is Idhayakanni and I like the name a lot and it sounded very different from the usual names. The name is also a name of a MGR film and so that is all the more attractive. Over all the response is good and I am happy.

Tell us about the squirrel that became part and parcel of your shoot

(Laughs) Squeaky (name of the squirrel) became like a part of our Aadu Puli family. We were shooting in Kumbakonam for the family song, that’s when the crew members brought her. It was given to Aadhi first and he brought it to me saying he had a surprise for me. I was first apprehensive about it because Aadhi is very naughty and I thought he was going to play some prank on me. But then when he handed me squeaky I was feeling happy but I was scared to touch it first. It was very small and couldn’t even move for short distances. Later on, Aadhi and I took turns in taking care of her. She has a special towel in my caravan and her favorite food is grapes. We took care of her in such a way that other people started asking if she is a king or a queen. When we were getting ready for the shoot with makeup, we would feed her with milk and get her ready to take her along to the location. Squeaky has also acted in the Aadu Puli’s family song. We really had a nice time with her and miss her a lot now and I would call her Aadu Puli’s lucky squeaky.

About Aadhi

Aadhi is a very nice guy and I am happy to have worked with him. All my friends told me we both make a good pair on screen. He is a great actor who has chosen different roles in his short career like in Mirugam and in Eeram where he played romactic hero and police officer. In Aadu Puli he is a commercial hero but also a guy-next-door and he is done it really well. He is a good dancer too. In shooting spots he used to keep saying he cannot dance but he did pick up the steps quite fast and when I saw him on screen dancing it looked like he was effortlessly doing it. So, I think he is a great actor and dancer and a best friend I made during my shoot. Thanks to Vijay Prakash sir for giving me an opportunity to work with a nice actor like him.

You have worked with popular senior actors in this movie. Tell us about them

I should thank my lucky stars for the opportunity. In my first film in Malayalam, I was extremely happy to have acted opposite a big star Mohanlal but in the case of Aadu Puli there was not one but 3 stars- Prabhu sir, Vijaya Maam and Ravichandran sir. I call Prabhu sir as chocolate boy because I think he is the eternal chocolate boy. (Laughs) Also, he emanates such happiness and energy that even when we are dull, we all become happy immediately. There is such a charm and energy in him as soon as he comes to the location. When I ask him how he manages to change the environment like that, he says he will not reveal that secret but that if he loses that charm he will know it is time for him to stop acting. Talking about Vijaya Maam she is very nice. She was like a friendly mother to me throughout the shoot. If she sees any programs or movies featuring me she will immediately call or message saying my performance was good. To get such a compliment from an award winning senior actress is a very happy and exciting thing. She also used to give me beauty tips and gave me several face packs that she used to put in olden days to improve her skin. On the whole, it was great team to work with and I once again thank the director and producer for giving me a role in this film.

"Prabhu sir is the eternal

chocolate boy"

People say you look like Asin. What do you say about that?

(Laughs) For the past three years this question has been behind me. Yes, many have told that I look like her. Even Vijay sir told that. People who saw me in movies first said that and I thought I looked like her on screen sometimes. But then even in person some of them felt I look like her. I really do not know what to say about this. If it is a positive thing then I am happy.

How is Aadu Puli doing?

Movie is doing really good. We went to the theatre and saw the film as a team and we were surprised to find even youngsters watching the film and enjoying it. We were under the impression that only family audience might enjoy it but I was happy to see youngsters also there and needless to say the family audience loved the film. After the movie seeing them enjoy and not finding it boring, we confidently came and stood outside the theatre because we knew they will tell that the movie was good. It is hard for a movie to do well without the audience’s support and word of mouth and I am happy Aadu Puli has that.

"Me and Nakul have a lot of


Tell about the actors you have worked with in your previous films

I have worked with Bharath, Nakul, Srikanth and Aadhi. Talking about Bharath, he is a very nice guy. Muniyaandi Moondram Aandu Vilangiyal was the first film for me and so there were several Tamil words and I knew no Tamil at all. But Bharath helped me out and made me feel comfortable. In the very first film, having worked with a prominent hero and director Thirumurugan I was very happy. Talking about Nakul, I had fun shooting for the film with him. We both used to fight a lot and also we had lot of similarities. Nakul was also jumpy and talkative like me, so it was a great experience and I got along with him well. With Srikanth I worked in Drohi. In that movie my role was very different from the usual heroine roles. Even during Aadu Puli promotions, I was asked and praised for my role in Drohi. I never expected it will have such a reach; I just gave my best and got along well with co star Srikanth. When I look back in future I will surely think of it as a role to remember.

Why did you accept a role in a commercial film after doing a unique role in Drohi?

I am looking for variety. In Drohi my role was very good and strong. In Kandha Kottai it was a solemn and romantic one, in Aadu Puli it is a bubbly character. So when I was playing the three roles, I could feel the difference in each of the role. Also, I wanted to do a role like the one in Aadu Puli after doing a rough and tough character in Drohi. I do not want to be typecast but take up different types of roles.

In future would you prefer Tamil or Malayalam films?

Actually no preference as such but I have grown comfortable in the Tamil film industry because I have done four films already and doing a few more. In Malayalam I have done just three films. I am doing well in Tamil and picking up the language also fast maybe because my mother is from Coimbatore. I am ready to take up good roles in either of the languages.

In Drohi it was an all women crew. How different was working with such a crew?

There is nothing that women can’t do now a days and Sudha Madam proved that with Drohi. There was not much difference but just that we hear several female voices in the locations. Generally, there are more men in the locations of other films and we hear more of their voices but here the director, producer, camera assistants were all young girls and women. Srikanth used to be stuck with us and we all used to make fun of him. He will be waiting for Vishnu to arrive. It was a great experience shooting with such a crew. People who saw the movie were all so surprised that it was made by a woman with a crew consisting of predominantly women. Sudha madam proved in the very first shot that she is a great director.

"Srikanth used to be stuck with

us women and we all used to

make fun of him"

"I want to act with big stars and

also new comers"

What actors you want to act with?

I want to act with everyone. Be it new faces or big stars, I want to have the experience of working with all types of actors. This is the time where the market for new comers is really good. They are all accepted by the audience today unlike in past when new faces did not make much of an impact.

What are your future projects?

My next release will be a Telugu film with Allari Naresh. After that Vellore Maavataam with Nandha will be released soon and shooting will be over for Arjunanin Kadhali and that should release after that. I haven’t signed anything after that and I am just waiting for good scripts.

About your Telugu projects and the future there

Actually I have done a Telugu film three years ago called Sri Mahalakshmi. I am doing this film with Allari Naresh after quite a long gap. Allari Naresh is known for his great comic timing and the movie, I feel, will do really well. Right now, I love Chennai and I love working here. I would love to work in Telugu projects and that was good experience too. But it is a little difficult to shoot when I don’t know the language.

"My next release is a Telugu film

with Allari Naresh"

Recent movie that you watched

I watched Aadi Puli recently. (Laughs) Only that, seriously.

Tags : Poorna, Aadu Puli, Drohi, Aadhi, Nakul, Kandha kottai, Srikanth
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