Amala is simply unforgettable.
After all, she ruled the Tamil film industry in the 1980s. She delivered hits after hits and her characters are fondly remembered even today.
Now, she is back in the Tamil entertainment industry - not in films but as a judge on Vijay TV’s 'Super Mom' show (Monday to Thursday at 2 PM).
The soft-spoken actress, who is actively involved in many social causes, says, “A lot of channels have approached me to do shows. But, I was not interested in long-term commitments. When Vijay TV approached me, they assured me that it was just a short stint as judge to select the best mom. And I readily lapped up the offer.”
She took a long break from Tamil cinema but not from Telugu. “Back in Hyderabad, I meet the media twice a week for different causes. Yes, in Tamil it’s been quite a long break - almost 18 years,” adds the social activist.
How good is her Tamil these days?
“In these 18 years I have learnt to speak Telugu well,” laughs Amala and adds, “Of course, my Tamil was layered behind Telugu. But, I speak the language very well. From the second day of the shoot I started feeling comfortable.”
Being a judge
Vijay TV’s new show Super Mom showcases the strong bond between a mother and her kid. After many auditions, 22 moms and kids have been finally selected. All of them will compete to win the title of ‘Super Mom’. Amala says, “I listen, observe and note down each one’s performance. The channel has a clear criteria and they already had a preliminary round. As far as participants are concerned, they are really commendable. I hope in the long run the show would be a great learning ground for everyone.”
The mother of two, Chaitanya and Akhil, Amala says, “I’m strictly against authority. Parents should take time to address everything in a positive manner and should be open to their kids. A parent can’t be dictatorial to their kid. The give-and-take policy will always work out in parenting a child. One should approach the kid with open mind and with full of positive attitude. My younger kid Akhil is old enough. Both are grown up and Akhil is in class 12.”
‘Nagarjuna is a great father’
Talking about her superstar husband, Amala says, “Nagarjuna is a great father. He makes it a point to have dinner along with the family in spite of his busy shooting schedules.”
“There are millions of people who devote their lives for social causes. But, being a star’s wife is an added visibility. It’s a good privilege and a huge platform to do social causes. I never misuse the status of being a star’s wife. There’s a lot of effort and thought added before you speaking out,” says Amala on being a star’s wife.
It’s not just one social cause she is involved with. Her list of association with NGOs goes on. Amala is also involved with UNICEF, Blue Cross Hyderabad, and also associated with the WWF (World Wide Fund) and Greenpeace to spread environmental-related awareness.
Amala - The Actress
“I’ve a very demanding life and I hardly watch Tamil films. In fact, I’m out of touch but I do watch a couple of Gautham Menon films. Indian cinema as such have come a long way. If you don’t go with the flow, you lag behind. I hope we will curb piracy, due to which people involved in cinema face a tough time,” says Amala.
She recalls, “I had a very busy schedule once - shoot after shoot and all that hard work really pays well even today, as people recognize me as an actress. Wherever I go - to airport, theatres or market - I can see the joy on people’s faces. It’s very touching when people remember me through my characters.
Most memorable films:
"Tamil fans still remember my characters in 'Agni Natchathiram' , 'Karpura Mullai' and Tamil maamis still recall my role in 'Vedham Pudhithu' . In Telugu, it’s always 'Shiva' and in Hindi it’s 'Pushpak' .