I am not keen on Bollywood, says Anjali
I am not keen on Bollywood, says Anjali – The actress talks to DC about the bold and challenging character that she plays in the intense emotional drama Sindhubaadh.
Anjali recently returned to the city after a hectic shooting schedule in Seattle in USA for her upcoming multilingual project — Silence, where she takes a cop avatar. The actress who has shed close to eight kgs talks to DC about the bold and challenging character that she plays in the intense emotional drama Sindhubaadh, teaming up with Vijay Sethupathi after their offbeat film Iraivi and shooting experiences in Thailand and sporting a police uniform in a film.
“Sindhubaadh is film which revolves around a lovable couple. The film is set in Tenkasi, where Vijay Sethupathi plays a petty thief. I essay Venbha, a simple girl, yet she is strong and assertive. We madly fall for each other and get married. When miscreants kidnap me to a foreign locale, whether my husband rescues me from their clutches forms the rest, a story, which takes place in 36 hours,” Anjali says.
We hear you speak loudly in the movie. “True! Even otherwise people tell me that I speak loudly in real life. That was an added advantage during dubbing as I could do it realistically. Yes, in the movie, VSP character is short of hearing and hence my decibel levels are high (laughs).”
Tell us about Surya Sethupathi — “He comes as a partner to Sethu in thieving. He is a talented kid and gets his shots perfect even in the first take itself. And the combo scenes of the duo have turned out very well. He calls me Anjali Akka.”
On sharing screen space with VSP for the second time. “Even in Iraivi, we played a married couple, but it was totally a different take. She was forced to marry him and hence there’s hardly any love or chemistry between them. Here in Sindhubaadh, they are madly in love with each other and there’s a passionate love and romance. And director Arun was saying that we both gave our best performance, which looked very natural on screen. I am always conscious while acting with Vijay Sethupathi. He will outsmart you at any given point of time. He also tells that he is careful while performing alongside of me. And coming from a great actor’s mouth, I take it as a big compliment.”
On the most challenging scene — “There was a 9 minute pre climax highly emotional scene was highly demanding. Because, it was canned in a single shot and posted without cuts. And we have to complete it in one take as the lights would go off. Of course, we did lot of rehearsals and finally pulled it off. I had difficulty while dubbing for the particular scene at a stretch. Mudiayalai! I took rest in between and gave voice.”
A role sans makeup — “It was not something new to me, . Even in Angadi Theru, I did not apply makeup. Here in Sindhubaadh, the cinematographer and director were very particular that I come just as I am at home sans any makeup. The cameraman would scan me every day when I reach the spot for the shoot and even if he finds a small liner on my eyes, he would immediately ask me to remove it at once.”
On spooky experiences as she has worked in few horror films. “My mom fondly calls me a ‘pei’ (ghost). So, when there’s already a ghost at home, other spirits would hesitate to come. Jokes apart, while shooting for a film in Hyderabad, people were saying that the place is haunted with ghosts. But, I didn’t find anything strange, till I completed my work.”
Despite the fact that Sindhubaadh was shot 70 per cent in Thailand, not even a single day we could experience the nightlife of Bangkok, the Engeyum Epoodhum actress says. “Where’s the time? It takes 3 hours to reach the location from our hotel every day. The traffic is very heavy there. I wake up at 5 am and get ready and reach the location by 8.30 a.m. And from 9 a.m. the shooting starts. It will go on till late evening say 8 p.m., as the daytime is longer than night time there. This was my routine. However, I binged on Thai food.”
The moment you start the topic about proposals from actors, she quickly responds. “Oh, all the actors with whom I am paired are married. So, no chance.”
How about Jai, with whom you were linked and who is still a bachelor — “I am not talking to Jai on a day to day basis. My friends circle is different now.”
Sharing her experiences playing a cop for the first time in her career she says, “Silence, an investigative thriller is directed by Hemanth Madhukar and also has Madhavan and Anushka (who essays a deaf and mute). I play a US based cop. It was physically demanding and I had to put in a lot of effort. Unlike the cop roles in Indian cinema, this one needed a different understanding and I had to take special courses about how cops in US work and function. From their body language to the way they communicate and hold their guns, I had all new experience. It involved lot of action as well. It was exciting and stimulating.”
She also revealed that the film is being shot in Tamil, Telugu, will be released in other languages like Hindi, Malayalam and Kannada and also in English, as it features several international actors including Hollywood actor Michael Madsen.
Are you not keen on Bollywood. “I am contented and comfortable in my place (Tamil and Telugu), and not really keen to endeavour in an unknown territory.”