Actor Narain, who has made his mark in various film industries, is now making a comeback to the Tamil film industry with Kaththukutti. The film, which is being directed by Era Saravanan, is a full-fledged comedy that will see Narain share screenspace with comedian Suri, and actor Srushti Dange.
Narain plays Arivazhagan, a postgraduate gold medalist in the film, which, despite being a comedy, will showcase the travails of farmers. CE catches up with the actor who is determined to announce his presence in the industry.
You are known for taking up serious roles. Why did you decide to choose comedy now and more importantly, why Kaththukutti in particular?
I have always wanted to do comedy films. But I got introduced in Tamil in a very serious character and that continued. I waited for comedy scripts and love stories, but nothing came my way. Every time I met directors, they would come up with rugged characters and say this would suit me. In fact, many roles that came my way, even after Mugamoodi (2012), in which I played the antagonist, were rough and tough.
That’s when I met the director of this film, Era Saravanan, through another friend. We were having a casual chat when he asked me, ”You are so casual and jovial, but I’ve never seen you play such a role in a film?” I replied that I had not been offered such a role. The next day, I got a call from my friend, who said that director Saravanan had a script in hand, and that the director felt I must consider playing the lead in his film.
How confident were you about pulling off your role? Does this film have a separate track for comedy?
I have done some characters in Malayalam that though not comical, are light-hearted and humour-based. Though I hadn’t got that opportunity in Tamil, I have always been comfortable handling comedy. I am not a brilliant comedian wherein you give me an average scene and I create comedy out of that. But when you give me comedy sequences that are based on the script, then, I am 100 per cent sure that I can fit into it. And no, this film does not have a separate comedy track. The comedy sequences blend with the subject of the film.
Srushti Dange, who plays the female lead in this film, says that she respects you so much as an actor that she was scared of acting before you. It was only after getting to know you that she realised that you were a fun-loving, jovial person...
(Laughs) Due to the roles I have done, people tend to perceive me as being serious and stern. Plus, I am not a very relaxed guy at work. I am tense. I experience a sort of healthy tension. I might be thinking of the humour scene that I am preparing for and as a result, I would have a very tensed look on my face. But people would think, ‘Why is this guy so serious?’
What was the most challenging moment in this film?
There is one particular scene in the film in which I make a lot of good suggestions to the villagers. That comes as a surprise in the film. My dialogues for this particular scene ran into three to four pages. An assistant director came and told me that this was a single shot. That is something no artiste will like. I was tense because if I couldn’t deliver it, the shoot would have to be extended by another day and that would mean more expenditure. But the director said, “Let’s try it sir. If it doesn’t work, we will break it into several shots.” But we managed it in one shot, thanks to Suri and all my other co-actors.
So, what next?
I believe this film will get me back on track. I am waiting for this film to release because I am sure this will change people’s perception about me. Then, I will decide my next script.