Exclusive Interview With 'Nadunissi Naaygal' Deva
“I never dreamt of becoming an actor and everything happened over a fact of co-incidence’ cheerfully says Deva, who speaks about his onscreen debut ‘Nadunissi Naaigal’. Having been an associate of Gowtham Vasudev Menon over many projects, the young lad feels elated for being launched by his mentor.
In an exclusive interview with Top10Cinema, Deva speaks about his way towards filmdom, ‘Nadunissi Naaygal’ and much incisively about his relentless jealousy upon ‘Vinnaithaandi Varuvaaya’.
You look so young than your role in ‘Nadunissi Naaygal’. Quite unbelievable indeed… How did you react when Gowtham Menon wanted you to perform the role of ACP officer?
A huge surprise with an unavoidable blend of shock… Never imagined he would just come up and ask me to perform such a powerful role. As an aspiring actor, I always envisaged myself as a soft cool romantic hero. But as we know it, Gowtham Menon’s Midas-touch got the best out of me. Even my own family members including Sridevi aunty was bounded to huge surprise while watching me perform the role of an assistant commissioner of police. But at the end, it’s appreciations everywhere.
How did you prepare for this role?
The moment Gowtham sir informed about my role, he was clear about my delineation. He never wanted to overreact. His projection of idea on Arjun’s character was lot of things run inside his mind and yet he deals situations with coolness. Of course, Gowtham Menon has always been an Olympian over portraying his actors as cops. I had Suriya as my role inspiration and did some home work to improve my body language.
As an audience, how would you perceive ‘Nadunissi Naaygal’ after reading the mixed reviews?
I would obviously say that it really needs courage for a filmmaker to come up with such innovative ideas and break down the clichés to which film industry is confined upon. Hollywood has produced movies of this genre that was so disturbingly provocative. But this film is done with an exact detailing of research and of course, a blatant reality.
Did you go for theatre visits?
Yes, I watched the movie along with audiences at PVR Cinemas and went through couple of feedbacks from audiences comprising of families and those who came in group as friends. The youngsters were enthralled watching the film as I could hear them saying at end, ‘Only Gowtham is capable of making such brilliant movies’. But on the contrary, I feel the family audiences got emotional over certain factors.
Let’s switch over to the shooting phase of ‘NN’. Surely, the way the movie is shot makes it clear that the entire crew had to go through a back-breaking phase.
With major portions of the film shot during night times, we had to keep ourselves enlivened throughout the schedules. Since the characterizations were limited, it was more to do with actions. Be it myself, Veera or Sameera Reddy, everyone had a very tough time while filming. Gowtham Menon was going through lots of psychological pressures and yet he remained cool. I must really thank Sameera Reddy for her friendliness. In spite of being the senior artist, she was so supportive to us and helped us perform well.
Most favorite scene in the movie…
I would go for the combat that takes place between me and Veera during climax. We never come across each other throughout the movie. But the climax was challenging and we had to prove ourselves to the core of perfection.
You said your option was about performing chocolate boy roles. Didn’t you feel disappointed with ‘Vinnaithaandi Varuvaaya’ as you couldn’t make it through the film?
(Smiles and after a pregnant pause), Yes, I love the character of ‘Karthik’. Naturally, everyone in Kollywood would have dreamt of performing the role of ‘Karthik’ and ‘Jessie’. But Silambarasan is a senior actor and he had performed very well. But on personal front (continues to smile) I slightly feel jealous towards Naga Chaitanya (Telugu version ‘Ye Maaya Chesavo’) and now Prateik Babbar (repeating the role of Karthik in Hindi version).
We have already spotted you in first look of posters of ‘Chennaiyil Oru Mazhaikalam’. What happened to the project?
Yes, I was so excited doing the project as it again comes to my dream role of a sweet bubbly city boy. It’s a feel-good love story about group of friends and I had some interesting sequences in the movie like falling for Trisha. In fact A.R. Rahman sir appreciated my performance and said that he had very much liked my acting. But the project didn’t continue due to some reasons and I believe it will resume soon.