Vijay Raghavendra was surprised to be declared winner of the first season of Bigg Boss Kannada. He, like most viewers, thought Arun Sagar was going to clinch the title. Now that Vijay has won, some are wondering if it’s his simplicity that appealed to the voters. “I hope so, and, yes, of course, I have always believed in being simple. It’s an attitude I endorse as an individual. But being simple is not easy, especially when you are faced with tricky situations, like those in the Bigg Boss house,” says Vijay. The actor pins his win on audience support. “It was because of them that I survived till the end. I always thought Arun anna would win because of his talent and experience, and the way he handled every task.
‘‘In fact, I was already imagining giving him a congratulatory hug, when they called out my name, instead. Even as I was handed the trophy, I was wondering, ‘Did I really win?’” he says.
Being part of a reality show, Vijay says, has helped him learn patience. “Fortunately, all of us contestants are friends from much before the show. Though, I got to know everyone better inside the house. We became like an extended family. Today, I consider Arun a brother,” he says. Vijay dismisses talk of the show being scripted. “With cameras on round-the-clock, there’s no question of episodes being directed. What you see is what happened and that was enough to spice the show,” he says.
On Sudeep, who anchored the show, Vijay is all compliments. “He was a great support and has been a pillar of strength to my family outside. He made me introspect about life and realise my mistakes. I have absolute respect for him,” says Vijay who was overjoyed to see his father, brother and wife at the finale. “It was my wife’s birthday on June 28, so this win is like a gift to us,” he adds.
Vijay took home prize money worth ` 50 lakh. He plans to invest it in the dance school that he runs. “I have few plans for the dance classes and this money will come handy in working them out. This is hard-earned money, I want to spend it right,” he says.
Locked away from films and filmdom for 100 days, Vijay, surprising suffered no withdrawal symptoms. “Though, I faced a different type of camera inside the house, there I felt that God was watching over me. I needed this break from movies, it’s helped me become a better actor and person.