Sitting in a cramped caravan on a film set, somewhere on OMR… you don’t expect to meet a ‘spiritual Simbu.’ But there is no other way to put it. The actor, known to have been steeped in controversy in the past, opens up to Sonali Shenoy ahead of his 30th birthday, and says that he is a changed man. It turns out his Himalayan trip last year has changed a lot more than his aura on set. STR tells us in this exclusive that his biggest dream is to unite the world someday. With five films being directed by a host of biggie directors in the pipeline this year, his Love Anthem with Akon planned for mid-2014 and marriage on the cards with Hansika, we don’t doubt that this actor is a force to reckon with.
‘Life is a movie and I'm directing it’
I’ve actually always wanted to be 30, ever since I was little. When you’re a kid, people are always saying you can’t do things. I guess at the time, 30 seemed like an age when I could do it all. Also, I remember I would tell all my friends and my parents that I would only get married after 30. And look at me today!
Long Distance Love Affair
When you’re in love, you’re in love. I don’t think about all that.
Maybe even this year, you never know…
I feel a lot more at ease working with Nayan now. The only thing that bothers me is that when I’m saying a line, sometimes the whole unit will looking at us and start laughing. So that can get awkward.
I’m going to try to finish this completely because I may have to grow a beard for the Gautham film. The first half will see me playing a VTV-like role, and then after that there will be more action. I choose my directors based on my comfort level with them, not because of the business side. When I was younger, my parents would ask me to act and they would give me chocolates (laughs). But if tomorrow, I can’t act in movies, I’m sure that I’ll find something else.
I started singing for the pocket money, I remember singing Kadhal Virus for Rahman early on. It used to be once in awhile, but now it’s become an every weekend affair, so much so that I have to turn people down. Even this Republic Day, I recorded two songs. But I just sing, I don’t consider myself a ‘proper’ singer.
Love Anthem will release by mid-2014 or the end of the year. We still have some shooting to do for the video. If the launch is in Chennai. Akon will come here. We might also have the launch in the US, I’m not sure.
My only regret is that I did only 10 per cent of what I set out to do. Either I didn’t have the time, or I thought the audience wasn’t prepared for what I had in mind. Six years ago, a kissing scene was a big issue in a movie, like in Vallavan. But right now, if you look at VTV, I had 10 kissing scenes with Trisha and it wasn’t a big deal. There was much more inside me that I wanted to bring out when I was young. I’m going to try and accomplish what I planned between 20 and 30, between 30 and 40
Life at 40?
It may sound a little weird, but I started really looking at the world only at 28. And I believe the truth is always hidden. I really want to do something for the world by breaking this notion of trying to control people by putting them down. Why should we be so divided? If there is another alien or ET who comes to Earth and sees us, they will definitely laugh. Why should USA be a better country and India, a poor one? We are all human beings. I want to unite the world. And I don’t want people to call me Indian, I want to be called just what I am.
I know and people think I’m mad, but I don’t care. I don’t like money, I think it is the biggest problem in this world.
Missing in action
I’ve become a lot more spiritual ever since my trip to the Himalayas last year. I always felt like there were two people inside me. My soul is different and the person inside this body is entirely different. I am a changed actor and definitely a different person from who I was last year. I’ve realized that everything in my life isn’t what it seems to be. It’s just a movie. And right now, I’m trying to direct my own movie.